What people are saying about

Famous All Over Town

“Bernie Schein is the funniest man alive, or so he has dogmatically maintained during the burdensome decades I have known him. Like its author, this ambitious novel is by turns hysterically funny, wildly neurotic, uniquely sensitive, and heartbreakingly honest. Bernie has staked his claim on the literary landscape of the South with his unforgettable small town of equally unforgettable Jews, whites, blacks, marines, politicians, prostitutes, cops, killers, sell-outs, aristocrats, journalists, and rebels. He shies away from neither the best nor worse in us and, with compassion and authority, tells a story that is at once his own and that of everyone you will ever meet, each made famous all over town.”—Pat Conroy

“Since you can’t sing “Dixie,” “We Shall Overcome,” and “My Yiddishe Momme” all at once, you must read this splendid novel, a vision of the small-town South, past and present, that will rattle your funny bone and rend your heart.”—Peter Golden, author of Comeback Love

“Bernie Schein’s Famous all over Town achieves what engaging storytelling is supposed to achieve—expressive characters revealing spirited stories. Covering the ’60s into the ’90s of conflict and change in the lowcountry of South Carolina, Schein’s cast of activists rise up in triumph. Splendidly written, it is a reader’s delight.”—Terry Kay, author of To Dance with the White Dog and The Book of Marie

“Famous all over Town captures the heart and essence of imperfect, lovable, infuriating, and admirable southern characters in a story full of vivid images and intersecting story lines from the ’60s through the ’90s. With a soft heart and a calloused hand, Bernie Schein introduces us to a South we might not ever know without him, and it’s a place I’d like to settle in for good.”—Patti Callahan Henry, author of The Stories We Tell, And Then I Found You, and others

“In his impressive and overflowing epic tale, Schein creates a world that is as real as it is hilarious and tragic. His characters confront head-on the possibilities and impossibilities of race, religion, and class in a lowcountry town. I promise you, this is a remarkable book.”—Judy Goldman, author of Losing My Sister

“I read the book. I love the book. I think it is about much more than our home town in earlier days. It is such a fine reflection of Bernie’s career working with young and old to capture and manage the inner child in us all but sometimes torments some more than others.”—Billy Keyserling, mayor of Beaufort, South Carolina

“Every South Carolina schoolboy in the ’60s knew the story of the shaved-head, steely-eyed recruits who were maliciously marched into the pluff mud at Parris Island, a place we all feared, for good reason. Within these pages, Bernie Schein transports us deep into that psychologically loaded place and time where religion and racism serve as barometric bookends to a tragedy that touched the lives of an entire town and resonated with the whole nation.”—Ken Burger, author of Swallow Savannah, Sister Santee, and Salkehatchie Soup

“Another time, another place—yet Somerset, South Carolina, is every small town anywhere in anytime. Its characters represent each of us in all of our flawed, tragicomic humanity. I know these people and you will, too. They’re friends, relatives, neighbors, the people we go to church or synagogue with, the ones we wed and bed, love and hate, mourn and bury. Leaning on their backyard fences, they’re already spreading the word: YOU are in this book!”—Cassandra King

“Bernie Schein is a great storyteller. His new novel, “Famous All Over Town”, is a not very disguised version of Beaufort, SC, Schein’s own hometown and current residence. Schein’s entertaining and provocative novel features a passel of colorful Southerners, both black and white, with two Jews as its central characters. Schein’s autobiographical tales help give a sense of his lifelong passion for the South which he brings to life… This portrait of Jews in a small, intimate, Southern town is compelling…unexpected…imaginatively captured by a talented storyteller who knows his corner of it very well and who loves it a great deal.“ —Charles Munitz, The Jewish Advocate