Cover Image: The Two-Family House

The Two-Family House

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Member Reviews

Brothers Mort and Abe took over the family business when their father died. Mort had been in college and he dropped out to work with his brother. It is a decision that he is angry about for the rest of his life, but he internalizes those feelings and his personality changes. Abe is the happy-go-lucky brother that everyone loves and wants to be around. He is the face of the company, while Mort does the books, he is the numbers guy. The are married and sharing a duplex. Abe has 4 boys, Morty has 3 girls. Each of their wives, Rose (Mort's) and Helen (Abe's) is expecting at the same time. They go into labour during a snowstorm and the babies are delivered by a midwife at home. Surprisingly, Rose finally has her boy, and Judith has her girl. As they grow up, Teddy and Natalie become best friends, almost like twins. What happens to the families based on the decisions made that stormy night is at times expected and others surprising.

The setting for this novel is New York in the fifties. I enjoyed the closeness of the families, even living in the same house. They did everything together and the kids were more like siblings than cousins. Abe and Mort were like normal brothers who got along, but there were some cracks in that relationship, many one sided. It seemed to me that Mort blamed Abe for what happened in his life, but didn't realize that was what had shaped his path. There is a tragedy in the story that again, caused shifts in the lives of the families. The author also dealt with the beliefs of females and higher education at the time. This was a well-written family saga that I enjoyed. This is the story of two brothers and their families. It involves secrets, choices made, anger, forgiveness and love. What would you do to save your family and marriage?
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beautiful writing and a great family story. 
This is not a book for anyone that needs action or adventure, over the top drama or a lot happening. 

this is a book for those that enjoy several perspectives and realistic family stories that are not actually slow but not really fast moving either -because the entire book just felts as if it could be real life. 

I personally enjoyed how different each of the characters where from each other, how and why those two families lived together in the house. It was just a very nicely done book. 

I personally didn't see the need nor liked the "twist" in this book. For one because its as foreseeable from the very start and never felt as if it was something big or in need of a revival. So i didn't understand why the author tried to make it seems if that was necessary. 

But overall this was a great book and if you love family stories and a bit of tragedy and lots of real life feeling? give this a try
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It took me several attempts to start this book, but I am so glad I did.  It didn't disappoint.  I felt so many emotions reading this, but in the end, I had satisfaction that I found this story.
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An amazing story of two Jewish sister-in-laws who give birth in a snowstorm and are forced to use a midwife because they cannot get to the hospital. While the women are not due on the same day, there's no accounting for unexpected early labor! Both women have certain thoughts about what their husbands have their hearts set on regarding their future children (two brothers who are as different as oil and water) and this leads them to make a rash decision that will have implications for the rest of their lives. As a person of Jewish faith myself, I appreciated some of the cultural nuances that were included that I could relate to and loved reading about all the different personalities residing under one roof in a "two-family house"!
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Rose and Helen both feel like something is missing in their lives. When a blizzard hits it seems like they have the perfect time to fill the gap. Rose can finally give her husband the boy he's always wanted, and Helen has always wanted a little girl. How these families survive and thrive makes for a wonderful read!
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The Two-Family House by Lynda Cohen Loigman should carry a warning-this family saga is difficult to put down. The story begins in 1947 when we meet the two Berman brothers and their families who are living in a Brooklyn brownstone. Abe and Helen live upstairs with their four sons. Mort and Rose reside downstairs with their three girls. The brothers are co-owners of a cardboard box manufacturing company, and their personalities are very different. Helen and Rose are as close as sisters. Both women are pregnant and their babies are delivered at home during a blizzard. Two infants are born only minutes apart. A hasty private agreement made between Rose and Helen alters the course of their families and their friendship.
Loigman’s entertaining story spans 23 years and chronicles the joys and challenges of family life. Her realistic characters and fantastic plot make this a memorable novel. The author deftly examines the power of secrets and their impact on relationships. She also emphasizes that the ability to change is always possible. The only negative about The Two-Family House is that it ended. Hopefully Loigman will write her second book soon.
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