Ruth Rothwax, the heroine of You Gotta Have Balls, is a smart, neurotic, obsessive child of Holocaust survivors. She is a wife and the mother of three grown children as well as the successful proprietress of a letter writing and greeting card business. She also supports her newly immigrant, 87 year old widowed father, Edek, whom she is determined to keep active. Ruth lives well in lower Manhattan. When she travels to Poland with her father, they meet the flamboyant Zofia and her shy sidekick, Walentyna. Zofia shows interest in Edek and from that point on the story takes off. I will only add that balls refers to meatballs and that the title reflects the humor in the novel.
Although the dialogue is sometimes repetitive, Edek’s Eastern European accent is captured well by Brett. Ruth’s relationships with her family and friends are described realistically and comically.
This is a quick, fun read and I can easily imagine this book turned into an entertaining movie with the New York City streets and its colorful characters so charmingly portrayed.
Miriam Bradman Abrahams, mom, grandmom, avid reader, sometime writer, born in Havana, raised in Brooklyn, residing in Long Beach on Long Island. Longtime former One Region One Book chair and JBC liaison for Nassau Hadassah, currently presenting Incident at San Miguel with author AJ Sidransky who wrote the historical fiction based on her Cuban Jewish refugee family’s experiences during the revolution. Fluent in Spanish and Hebrew, certified hatha yoga instructor.