View Full Version : Beta needed for an Orthodox Jewish Contemporary/Romance

10-24-2013, 06:50 PM
Iím looking for a beta to read the first half of my young adult (maybe new adult) Jewish contemporary/romance novel to help me see if Iím on the right track, since this is my first Jewish novel. Iíd like the beta to be an Orthodox Jew, or someone who is knowledgeable in Orthodox Jewish life. Itís not that my book is geared toward that specific community onlyóI hope to have it appeal to everyoneóbut at this point, I need someone knowledgeable in that area. I am Orthodox, but Iíd like a fresh pair of eyes.

Hereís a link to the first chapter: http://www.absolutewrite.com/forums/showthread.php?p=8137712#post8137712 (http://www.absolutewrite.com/forums/showthread.php?p=8137712#post8137712)

Here is a rough version of the blurb:

For eighteen-year-old Aviva Baum, life can never be the same. Her little sister was killed in a car accident four months ago, tearing her family apart. Her father escapes to the synagogue to learn Torah with his partner every night. Her mother walks around like a zombie and canít exchange more than two words with her. And Aviva canít bring herself to be the happy, social girl she used to be.

All this changes when she joins a Jewish online support forum. There she meets a guy whose story is so similar to her own that they instantly form a bond. He helps her in more ways than one, encouraging her to rebuild a relationship with her parents.

Talking to a guy for purposes other than marriage is not accepted in her community and can cause serious consequences for her future. But Aviva has never felt such a connection to another person. Soon their online friendship blossoms into romance, and they desperately want to meet.

Can Aviva open her locked heart and let him inside? And is love worth the risk of damaging the reputation of her family and herself?

Saul Rothman
10-25-2013, 12:53 AM

I'm not an orthodox Jew -- in fact, I'm an orthodox Catholic, lol (a convert). However, I have loads of sympathy for both the religious and secular Jewish communities. I couldn't help you on details, but I might be of use on overall presentation. (And I wouldn't be totally inept at details, having had a lot of OT studying).

Right now, I'm reading/reviewing a fantasy novel of a friend, but I'm still free to read something else -- as long as you know that my comments might not be immediate.

I'm fine with reading without a quid-pro-quo; however, if you think you could contribute to evaluating a screenplay, I'd be happy to have the feedback.

If you decide to take me up on reading, please let me know how you would prefer to do it:

Chapter by chapter or overall?
Nitpicky sentence by sentence or overall with a return to details?