The Street Sweeper

death in summer book cover
Perlman’s story of modern New York is a big book in every sense. Huge in its scope, it covers two of the most searingly painful aspects of 20th-century history: the Holocaust and the abuse of African- Americans’ rights. The framework of the novel is the relationship between Lamont Williams, a black ex-con trying to rebuild his life as a hospital janitor, and an old man in the same hospital, who’s dying of cancer and who wants to share his memories of Auschwitz. But we also follow the fortunes of a young Jewish historian researching the role played by a black regiment in the liberation of a Nazi death camp. Perhaps Perlman’s greatest achievement, though, is the sharply drawn New York world — from the slums of the Bronx to Columbia University, from Iranian immigrants to civil-rights lawyers. All are vividly brought to life in an often extremely moving book.

Become more interesting every week!

Get our Read Up newsletter

how we use your e-mail

Some people like to travel by train because 
it combines the slowness of a car with the cramped public exposure of 
an airplane.

Dennis Miller

I think my pilot was a little inexperienced. We were sitting on the runway, and he said, “OK, folks, we’re gonna be taking off in a just few—whoa! Here we go.”

Kevin Nealon

“I can’t wait until your vacation is over.” 
—Everyone following you on Instagram


A man knocked on my door and asked for a donation toward the local swimming pool. So I gave him a glass of water.

Comedian Greg Davies

Funny Jokes

Just found the worst page in the entire dictionary. What I saw was disgraceful, disgusting, dishonest, and disingenuous.


Funny Jokes

Client: We need you to log in to the YouTube and make all our company videos viral.


Funny Jokes

My cat just walked up to the paper shredder and said, “Teach me 
everything you know.”


Funny Jokes

“Just because you can’t dance doesn’t mean you shouldn’t dance.” 

@yoyoha (Josh Hara)

Funny Jokes

My parents didn’t want to move to Florida, but they turned 60 and that’s the law.

—Jerry Seinfeld

Funny Jokes

Q: What do you call an Amish guy with his hand in a horse’s mouth?

A: A mechanic.