Feldman, Deborah. Unorthodox: The Scandalous Rejection of My Hasidic Roots

In this debut memoir, Feldman gives readers a fascinating glimpse into her life growing up in the extremely religious Satmar Hasidic community as well as her eventual escape from that life.  The daughter of a mentally unstable father and gay mother, who also decided to leave the extremely orthodox community as a young woman, Feldman was raised by her grandparents who firmly adhered to the religious and social customs of their culture. As she grew up, she struggled with the increasing expectations of her community to marry while her only real desire was to indulge in English language literature in her home where only Yiddish was allowed. When Feldman is married to a nice Satmar boy, she believes he will be the perfect husband, one that will allow her to explore her interests which most of the community would frown upon. Unexpectedly however, their first year of marriage is a disaster; full of difficulties with their sex life along with crippling anxiety for Feldman.

When Feldman finally becomes pregnant and gives birth to a son, she finds the courage to step outside her community for the first time. She aggressively pursues a college education while planning her escape from her disappointing marriage and a community where she no longer belongs.  Intriguing and extremely personal, this memoir explores the striking metamorphosis of young woman.

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