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Publishers Weekly® Reviews
- Reviewed in: Publishers Weekly, page .
- Review Date: 2016-04-04
- Reviewer: Staff
Teeming with heartbreak, irony, and intimate moments of joy, this first nonfiction book from journalist and novelist Ehrenreich (Ether) germinated from his 2013 New York Times Magazine cover story entitled (more provocatively) “Is This Where the Third Intifada Will Start?” For readers perplexed by the Israel-Palestine conflict, he intersperses his story with crash-course history lessons. But the author’s real project is to humanize ordinary Palestinians for Americans, capturing the humiliations and indignities—bureaucratic, psychological, and physical—that they suffer under occupation; their fear, anger, and frustration; and their families and celebrations. He paints a vivid portrait of life in three locations: the village of Nabi Saleh, where families have been protesting weekly for the right to use a spring that was theirs until Israeli settlers claimed it, and are consistently met with force; the city of Hebron, a puzzle box of checkpoints and segregated zones, and a powder keg of Jewish and Palestinian resentments; and the village of Umm al-Kheir, where a way of life is quietly dying in the shadow of ever-expanding settlements. With a journalist’s keen eye for detail and a novelist’s ardor for language and its ability to move people, Ehrenreich will incite renewed compassion in his readers. Agent: Gloria Loomis, Watkins Loomis Agency. (June)