Nonfiction Book Award Status: Silver Award
Author Name: Russel Lazega
Her devoted family only wants the best for their Bubbie. Mostly they want to ensure that their matriarch’s twilight years are spent in comfort, safety, and serenity. But how do you manage an aging, immutably stubborn Holocaust survivor who has risen above the squalor of Poland’s ghettos; fled across the war-torn German wilderness; and survived the winter-ravaged Pyrenees alone on foot with three children? You probably don’t.
Managing Bubbie is the heartrending, hilarious family memoir by Russel Lazega that recounts the frequently hectic, ever-exhausting trials of one Jewish family in Miami Beach as they try to oversee the care of the elderly, unmanageable Lea Lazega. As they scramble for an acceptable assisted living facility and struggle to get her medication in line, they discover the difficulties of controlling a woman who time and again eluded catastrophe by refusing to be told what to do.
A tapestry of an American family in the 1980s, Managing Bubbie also revisits the Holocaust period to mine the love, hope, and humor that emerged from the deepest despair. Anyone who savors a soft heart with a sharp funny bone will laugh, cry, and commiserate with the confounded family who must manage their beloved, impossible Bubbie.
Author Russel Lazega is a lawyer living in North Miami Beach, Florida. He is a columnist for the Aventura News and the author of several nonfiction publications, including Florida Motor Vehicle No-Fault Law and Practice (PIP), the nation’s leading treatise on Florida car insurance law that stirred tremendous excitement throughout Florida’s sprawling community of insurance agents and insurance lawyers. Managing Bubbie is Lazega’s first foray into creative nonfiction. When he is not writing, or chasing after a pair of fire-breathing, house-wrecking T. rexes impersonating small children, the author can be found kayaking the waterways of South Florida, venturing as far as the tide will take him from his loving, but indescribably overbearing, family.