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On the crowded streets of New York City there are even more stories than there are people passing each other every day… only some of these stories survive to become history.
Lamont Williams, recently released from prison and working as a hospital janitor, strikes up an unlikely friendship with a patient, an elderly Jewish Holocaust survivor who starts to tell him of his extraordinary past.
Meanwhile Adam Zignelik, the son of a prominent Jewish civil rights lawyer, is facing a personal crisis: almost 40-years-old, his long-term relationship is faltering and his academic career has stalled. It’s only when one of his late father’s closest friends, the civil rights activist William McCray, suggests a promising research topic that the possibility of some kind of redemption arises.
Dealing with memory, racism and the human capacity for guilt, resilience, heroism, and unexpected kindness, The Street Sweeper spans over fifty years, and ranges from New York to Melbourne, Chicago, Warsaw and Auschwitz, as these two very different paths – Adam’s and Lamont’s – lead to one greater story.
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