This is a story of more or less assimilated East-European Jews struggling through a world of technical innovation, revolution and increasing vulnerability for Jews. Yakov Keller tries to place all this in the context of the somewhat hilarious adventures of the main character Feivel and his fellows. The Zionist movement with its reviving of the Hebrew language plays a background role, much distrusted by the Yiddish speaking lower classes. With an unexpected surrealistic turn of the plot, the writer hints at what history has in store for these early twenty century burlesque characters. The description is vivid, sometimes a bit long. There is much food for thought, with a refreshing angle on a history which is too often told in cliches.