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Jewish Death Practices:
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The Burial Society

The Burial Society

Brief Synopsis

The Burial Society is a gripping, suspenseful thriller about the world’s most unlikely criminal, as he infiltrates the mysterious world of the Jewish burial society, in order to execute a most ingenious and unlikely of crimes.


The Story

When Sheldon Kasner arrives in town and offers his services to the local Chevrah Kadisha, the Jewish burial society that prepares bodies for burial, its three kindly old members have little reason to question his motives. Indeed, the seemingly harmless and somewhat nebbish businessman is just the new blood they need if their dying tradition is to survive. And so, pinning their hopes of survival on this unlikely stranger, the old men set about indoctrinating him into their dark and mysterious world, teaching him the extraordinary rituals of the Chevrah Kadisha — from the preparation and anointing of the corpses to the actual burial.

Before long, a kinship begins to form between Shell and the sweet old men. But, as we gradually come to see, Shell has an agenda of his own. Having spent the better part of life as a loans manager, he has watched life pass him by while he toiled over balance sheets.

That is, until a mysterious event changed the course of his life. And so this innocuous little man has set in motion a complex scheme involving the theft of $2 million and the staging of his own death.

Though things begin well enough — considering the morbid undertaking — they soon take an unexpected turn. Starting with the disappearance of the money and culminating in his being exposed, it becomes shockingly clear that nothing is as it appears, the old men are hardly the innocents that they seem, and Shell is not the one in control. For Shell, alas, that insight comes too late.

The Burial Society is the record of one man’s lunge for the brass ring, and his subsequent descent into purgatory. It is a gripping, plot-twisting tale of murder and intrigue that possesses a soul as well as a brain.