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Welcome to our pages of Winter 2015, Fall 2014, Summer 2014, Spring 2014, Winter 2014, Fall 2013, and oh so many more Book Suggestions. For our Home Page, Please visit MyJewishBooks.com

SOME WINTER 2015 BOOK READINGS


January 07, 2015: Anita Diamant reads from “The Boston Girl” - 7 p.m. at Wellesley Books, 82 Central St., Wellesley, MA
January 07, 2015: Michael Blumenthal reads from “The Greatest Jewish American Lover in Hungarian History” - 7 p.m. at Brookline Booksmith, Brookline, MA
January 09, 2015: Pamela Katz reads from The Partnership Brecht, Weill, Three Women, and Germany on the Brink. B&N NYC UES 86th/Lex
January 15, 2015: Mysticism and Magic in Jewish Thought Adam Mickiewicz University in Pozna/ Institute of European Culture in Gniezno 15th-16th January 2015
January 26, 2015: Michèle Fitoussi reads from Helen Rubenstein: Beauty is Power. The Jewish Museum. NYC US. Coincides with opening of a new exhibit

February 02, 2015: Menachem Z. Rosensaft reads from God, Faith & Identity From The Ashes. B&N NYC UES 86th St 7PM
February 03, 2015: Daniel Handler (Lemony Snicket) reads from We Are Pirates (not a Jewish book, but should be interesting to see him after the drunken embarrassing racist statements he made at the book awards in 2014) B&N NYC Union Square 7PM
February 04, 2015: Adam Braun, friend of Justin Bieber, reads from Prommise of a Pencil. B&N Tribeca NYC 7PM
February 08, 2015: Henry Winkler reads from Here's Hank. B&N NYC UES 86th St FIVE (5) PM, early evening, for kids
February 11, 2015: David Duchovny reads from a Daity Tale: HOLY COW. B&N NYC Union Square 7PM
February 22, 2015: Boris Fishman reads from A Replacement Life: A Novel. B&N Cedar Rapids.
February 25, 2015: Morris Dickstein reads from Why Not Say What Happened A Sentimental Education. His memoir. B&N NYC UWS 82nd St 7PM

March 02, 2015: Bruce Schneier reads from Data and Goliath The Hidden Battles to Collect Your Data and Control Your World. B&N NYC. Secret location since we dont want the world to know the real data (UWS 82nd St 7PM)
March 04, 2015: Joseph Kanon reads from Leaving Berlin A Novel. B&N NYC UES 86th & Lexington
March 09, 2015: Roger Cohen reads from The Girl from Human Street Ghosts of Memory in a Jewish Family. B&N NYC UWS 82nd St 7PM










DECEMBER 2014 BOOKS



[book] The Boston Girl
A Novel
by Anita Diamant
December 09, 2014
Scribner
From the New York Times bestselling author of The Red Tent and Day After Night, comes an unforgettable novel about family ties and values, friendship and feminism told through the eyes of a young Jewish woman growing up in Boston in the early twentieth century.
Addie Baum is The Boston Girl, born in 1900 to immigrant parents who were unprepared for and suspicious of America and its effect on their three daughters. Growing up in the North End, then a teeming multicultural neighborhood, Addie’s intelligence and curiosity take her to a world her parents can’t imagine—a world of short skirts, movies, celebrity culture, and new opportunities for women. Addie wants to finish high school and dreams of going to college. She wants a career and to find true love.
Eighty-five-year-old Addie tells the story of her life to her twenty-two-year-old granddaughter, who has asked her “How did you get to be the woman you are today.” She begins in 1915, the year she found her voice and made friends who would help shape the course of her life. From the one-room tenement apartment she shared with her parents and two sisters, to the library group for girls she joins at a neighborhood settlement house, to her first, disastrous love affair, Addie recalls her adventures with compassion for the naïve girl she was and a wicked sense of humor.
Written with the same attention to historical detail and emotional resonance that made Anita Diamant’s previous novels bestsellers, The Boston Girl is a moving portrait of one woman’s complicated life in twentieth century America, and a fascinating look at a generation of women finding their places in a changing world.
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A HIT IN ENGLAND
THE ECONOMIST CALLS IT MASTERFUL
[book] The Reckoning
Death and Intrigue in the Promised Land
A True Detective Story
by Patrick Bishop
December 2014
Harper
One of Britain's most renowned military historians revisits a controversial murder: that of Zionist leader Avraham Stern, head of Israel's notorious Stern Gang, in Tel Aviv during WWII.
Militant Zionist Avraham Stern believed he was destined to be the Jewish liberator of British Palestine.
As the ringleader of the infamous Stern Gang, also known as Lehi, he masterminded a series of high-profile terrorist attacks in pursuit of his dream. On the run from British authorities who'd put a bounty on his head, Stern was hiding in an attic in Tel Aviv when he was killed by Assistant Superintendent Geoffrey Morton, a British colonial policeman assigned to capture him.
Morton claimed Stern was trying to escape. But witnesses insisted he was executed in cold blood. His controversial death inspired a cult of martyrdom that gave new life to Lehi, helping to destroy hopes of a detente between the British, the Arabs, and the Jews.

“The Reckoning” is the story of Patrick Bishop's quest to discover the truth. Based on extensive research—including access to Morton's private archive and eyewitness interviews—it recounts this seismic event in full, without bias, placing it within the context of its turbulent time.
Bishop's gripping, groundbreaking narrative brings to life two men similar in ambition and dedication, chronicles the events that led to their fatal meeting, and explores how the impact of Stern's death reverberated through the final years of British rule and the birth of Israel.
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[book] The Wolf and The Lamb
A Jerusalem Mystery
By Frederick Ramsey
December 2014
Poisoned Pen Press
Ramsey, based in Arizona, has penned over a dozen novels, many of the set in Jerusalem. PW gave this book a starred review.
It’s Passover.
Gamaliel, and his physician friend, Loukas, are crime-solving a third time — reluctantly.
Pontius Pilate has been accused of murder. He denies the crime. If convicted, he might escape death but would be removed from Judea. Those rejoicing urge the Rabban to mind his own business. But Gamaliel is a Just Man which is, as Pilate points out, “your weakness and also your strength.”
Knowing that exonerating the Roman could cost him his position, possibly his life, Gamaliel, as would Sherlock Holmes centuries later, examines evidence and sorts through tangled threads, teasing out suspects who include assassins, Roman nobles, Pilate’s wife, rogue legionnaires, slaves, servants, thespians, and a race horse named Pegasus. Unusually, justice triumphs over enmity. Gamaliel is satisfied, High Priest Caiphas is irate, Loukas accepts an apprentice from Tarsus, and few notice the events of what will later be known as Easter. Ramsay’s plausible narrative answers some questions which have puzzled Biblical scholars for centuries.
Why did Pilate hear the case against Jesus? Why invent a tradition that required one prisoner be released at Passover? Having done so, why offer the most terrifying criminal in the country, Barabbas, as the substitute for Jesus when two better, less dangerous prisoners were at hand? And we ask, why could Caiphas not heed Gamaliel’s warnings not to martyr the man?
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[book] Asylum City:
A Novel
by Liad Shoham
December 9, 2014
Harper
Translated from Hebrew by Sara Kitai
I am starting to get confused by all the Shoham book covers.
The latest in his series of mysteries
In this edgy thriller from the #1 international bestselling author of Lineup, which was described by New York Times bestselling author Joseph Finder as "a marvel of tight plotting, spare prose, and relentless pacing," a young police officer's investigation of a murder plunges her into the dark underworld of Tel Aviv.

When young social activist Michal Poleg is found dead in her Tel Aviv apartment, her body showing signs of severe violence, officer Anat Nachmias is given the lead on her first murder investigation. Eager to find answers, the talented and sensitive cop looks to the victim's past for clues, focusing on the last days before her death. Could one of the asylum seekers Michal worked with be behind this crime?
Then a young African man confesses to the murder, and Anat's commanders say the case is closed. But the cop isn't convinced. She believes that Michal, a tiny girl with a gift for irritating people, got involved in something far too big and dangerous for her to handle.
Joined by Michal's clumsy yet charming boss, Anat is pulled deep into a perplexing shadow world where war victims and criminals, angels and demons, idealists and cynics, aid organizations and criminal syndicates intersect. But the truth may be more than Anat can handle, bringing her face to face with an evil she's never before experienced.
Click the book cover or title to read more or to purchase the book


















[book] Judge This
by Chip Kidd
December 2014
Simon & Schuster
A fun, playful look at the importance of first impressions—in design and in life—from acclaimed book designer Chip Kidd.
First impressions are everything. They dictate whether something stands out, how we engage with it, whether we buy it, and how we feel. In Judge This, renowned designer Chip Kidd takes us through his day as he takes in first impressions of all kinds. We follow this visual journey as Kidd encounters and engages with everyday design, breaking down the good, the bad, the absurd, and the brilliant as only someone with a critical, trained eye can. From the design of your morning paper to the subway ticket machine to the books you browse to the smartphone you use to the packaging for the chocolate bar you buy as an afternoon treat, Kidd reveals the hidden secrets behind each of the design choices, with a healthy dose of humor, expertise, and of course, judgment as he goes.
Judge This is a design love story, exposing the often invisible beauty and betrayal in simple design choices—ones most of us never even think to notice. And with each object, Kidd proves that first impressions, whether we realize it or not, have a huge impact on the way we perceive the world.
Click the book cover or title to read more or to purchase the book















[book] God, Faith & Identity from the Ashes
Reflections of Children and
Grandchildren of Holocaust Survivors
Edited by Menachem Z. Rosensaft
Featuring Elie Wiesel
December 2014
Jewish Lights
A powerful, life-affirming new perspective on the Holocaust—available to coincide with the seventieth anniversary of the end of WWII and the liberation of the Nazi death and concentration camps by Allied troops.
For the children and grandchildren of Holocaust (Shoah) survivors and refugees from Nazi persecution, the suffering and survival of their immediate ancestors and the annihilation of virtually their entire families have in large part shaped their perspectives on God, faith and Jewish identity. Their reflections on the memories transmitted to them and its effect on their lives will inform, challenge and inspire people of all faiths and backgrounds.
While the collective legacy of Holocaust survivors and refugees belongs to the entire Jewish people, as well as all humankind, on an individual level this extremely personal and often idiosyncratic legacy was transmitted first and foremost by the survivors to their own children and grandchildren. There is no one form of this legacy. Some survivors spoke about their experiences in the ghettos and camps; others enveloped themselves and their families in a cloud of silence, shrouding their past in an aura of mystery and secrecy.
There have been many books and studies about children of survivors—the so-called Second and Third Generations—with a psycho-social focus. This book is different. It is intended to reflect what they believe, who they are and how that informs what they are doing with their lives.
There are eighty-eight contributors from a broad range of occupations and professions—from theologians, scholars and spiritual leaders to authors, artists, political and community leaders and media personalities—in sixteen countries on six continents. They represent the widest possible religious, political and ideological spectrum.
Despite the contributor's diversity, common themes shine through. Intended for a popular audience of people of all faiths and backgrounds, these emotionally powerful, deeply moving statements will have a profound effect on the way our and future generations understand and shape their understanding of the Holocaust and their own personal identity in years to come.
Contributors include:
Supreme Court Justice Rosalie Silberman Abella
Ilya Altman
NYT Reporter and author Joseph Berger
Eleonora Bergman, Vivian Bernstein, Michael Brenner, Novelist and poet Lily Brett, New York Times deputy national news editor and former Jerusalem bureau chief?Ethan Bronner, Stephanie Butnick, Rabbi Chaim Ze'ev Citron, Dr. Stephen Comite, Elaine Culbertson, Former Israeli Minister of Internal Security and Shin Bet director Avi Dichter, Atty Israel Lawrence Elbaum, Alexis Fishman, Shimon Fogel, Dr. Eva Fogelman, Associate Judge Karen "Chaya" ?Friedman, Natalie Friedman, Michael Grunberger, David Harris, Eva Hoffman, Rabbi Abie Ingber, Josef Joffe, Rabbi Lody van de Kamp, Rabbi Lilly Kaufman, Aviva Kempner, Dr. David N. Kenigsberg, Yossi Klein Halevi, Stephan Kramer, Attorney Faina Kukliansky, Rabbi Benny Lau, Amichai Lau-Lavie, Philanthropist Jeanette Lerman-Neubauer, Hariete Levy, Annette Lévy-Willard, Rabbi Mordechai Liebling, Rabbi Dov Lipman (MP), Rabbi Michael Marmur, Julius Meinl, Merav Michaeli MP, David Miliband, Tali Nates, Eric Nelson, Atty. Eddy Neumann, Matt Nosanchuk, Aliza Olmert, Esther Perel, Sylvia Posner, Rabbi Joseph Potasnik, Dr. Richard Prasquier, Professor Richard Primus, Professor Shulamit Reinharz, Jochevet Ritz-Olewski, Moshe Ronen, Thane Rosenbaum, Rabbi Bernhard Rosenberg, Jean Bloch Rosensaft, Menachem Z. Rosensaft, Hannah Rosenthal, Rabbi Judith Schindler, Clarence Schwab, Cantor Azi Schwartz, Ghita Schwarz, Dr. David Senesh, Mayor Florence Shapiro, Rabbi Kinneret Shiryon, David Silberklang, André Singer, Robert Singer, Dr. Yaffa Singer, Sam Sokol, Alexander Soros, Rabbi Elie Kaplan Spitz, Michael Stein, Rabbi Kenneth Stern, Maram Stern, Carol Kahn Strauss, Aviva Tal, Professor Katrin Tenenbaum, Dr. Mark Tykocinski, Rabbi Moshe Waldoks, Dr. Diana Wang, Ilana Weiser-Senesh, Leon Wieseltier, and more
Click the book cover or title to read more or to purchase the book




JANUARY 2015 BOOKS




[book] ROADS TAKEN
THE GREAT JEWISH MIGRATIONS TO THE
NEW WORLD AND THE PEDDLERS WHO FORGED THE WAY
By Hasia Diner (NYU)
January 2015
Yale University Press
Between the late 1700s and the 1920s, nearly one-third of the world’s Jews emigrated to new lands. Crossing borders and often oceans, they followed paths paved by intrepid peddlers who preceded them. This book is the first to tell the remarkable story of the Jewish men who put packs on their backs and traveled forth, house to house, farm to farm, mining camp to mining camp, to sell their goods to peoples across the world. Persistent and resourceful, these peddlers propelled a mass migration of Jewish families out of central and eastern Europe, north Africa, and the Ottoman Empire to destinations as far-flung as the United States, Great Britain, South Africa, and Latin America.
Hasia Diner tells the story of millions of discontented young Jewish men who sought opportunity abroad, leaving parents, wives, and sweethearts behind. Wherever they went, they learned unfamiliar languages and customs, endured loneliness, battled the elements, and proffered goods from the metropolis to people of the hinterlands. In the Irish Midlands, the Adirondacks of New York, the mining camps of New South Wales, and so many other places, these traveling men brought change—to themselves and the families who later followed, to the women whose homes and communities they entered, and ultimately to the geography of Jewish history.
Click the book cover or title to read more or to purchase the book




















[book] LIKE A BOMB GOING OFF
Leonid Yakobson and Ballet as
Resistance in Soviet Russia
by Janice Ross (Stanford University)
Foreword as Ms. Lynn Garafola
January 13, 2015
Yale University Press
Everyone has heard of George Balanchine. Few outside Russia know of Leonid Yakobson, Balanchine’s contemporary, who remained in Lenin’s Russia and survived censorship during the darkest days of Stalin. Like Shostakovich, Yakobson suffered for his art and yet managed to create a singular body of revolutionary dances that spoke to the Soviet condition. His work was often considered so culturally explosive that it was described as “like a bomb going off.”
Based on untapped archival collections of photographs, films, and writings about Yakobson’s work in Moscow and St. Petersburg for the Bolshoi and Kirov ballets, as well as interviews with former dancers, family, and audience members, this illuminating and beautifully written biography brings to life a hidden history of artistic resistance in the USSR through this brave artist, who struggled against officially sanctioned anti-Semitism while offering a vista of hope.
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[book] THE GIRL FROM HUMAN STREET
GHOSTS OF MEMORY IN A JEWISH FAMILY
BY ROGER COHEN
January 2015
Knopf
blurbs from Fritz Stern and Joe Lellyveld

From everyone's favorite New York Times columnist ...

Human Street is in South Africa, where Roger Cohen's mother grew up.

Cohen wonders whether mental illness one of the last taboos

This is an intimate memoir of Cohen's modern Jewish identity, as well as his mother and family's bipolar disorder; it follows the diaspora of the author's own family and his mother to assay the impact of memory, displacement, and disquiet on life.

The award-winning New York Times columnist and former foreign correspondent from the Balkans and Europe turns a compassionate - yet discerning - eye on the legacy of his own family - most notably his mother's - in order to understand more profoundly the nature of modern Jewish experience.
Through his emotionally lucid prose, we relive the anomie (his word) of European Jews after the Holocaust, following his family from Lithuania to South Africa, England, the United States, and Israel.

The impetus of the book was when, after his mother's death, he found his mother's suicide notes in the attic. The notes were annotated by his father (who was a physician)... that showed the chronology and the other family members who suffered from depression. His mother was manic depressive and suicidal for much of her life.

He illuminates the uneasy resonance of the racism his family witnessed living in apartheid-era South Africa and the ambivalence felt by his Israeli cousin when tasked with policing the occupied West Bank.
(So because his Israeli cousin is ambivalent, then all Israelis are corrupt?) (Roger says Israel is not apartheid, but there are echoes of apartheid.)

He explores the pervasive Jewish sense of "otherness" and finds it has been a significant factor in his family's history of manic depression. (The process of beginning again after displacement stresses people… ) Some readers may take great issue with Cohen's thoughts that it was Jewish diaspora that affected his mother's mental state.

This tale of remembrance and repression, suicide and resilience, moral ambivalence and uneasily evolving loyalties (religious, ethnic, national) both tells an unflinching personal story and contributes an important chapter to the ongoing narrative of Jewish life.
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[book] The Global War on Morris
A Novel
by Steve Israel, U.S. Congressman
January 2015
Simon & Schuster
A political satire ripped from the headlines and written by Congressman Steve Israel, who’s met the characters, heard the conversations, and seen the plot twists firsthand.
Meet Morris Feldstein, a pharmaceutical salesman living and working in western Long Island who loves the Mets, loves his wife Rona, and loves things just the way they are. He doesn’t enjoy the news; he doesn’t like to argue. Rona may want to change the world; Morris wants the world to leave him alone. Morris does not make waves.
But one day Morris is seduced by a lonely, lovesick receptionist at one of the doctors’ offices along his sales route, and in a moment of weakness charges a non-business expense to his company credit card. No big deal, you might think. Easy mistake. But the government’s top-secret surveillance program, anchored by a giant, complex supercomputer known as NICK, thinks differently. Eventually NICK begins to thread together the largely disparate and tenuously connected strands of Morris’s life—his friends, family, friends’ friends, his traffic violations, his daughter’s political leanings, his wife’s new patients, and even his failed romantic endeavors—and Morris becomes the US government’s new public enemy number one.
A hilarious, debut novel from a charismatic author, The Global War on Morris toes the line between recent breaking headlines and a future that is not that difficult to imagine.
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[book] TOWARD AN ANTHROPOLOGY OF NATION BUILDING AND UNBUILDING IN ISRAEL
Edited and with an Introduction by
Fran Markowitz, Stephen Sharot, and
Moshe Shokeid
(Ben Gurion University of the Negev, Tel Aviv Univ.) With an Afterword by Alex Weingrod
January 2015
University of Nebraska Press
Toward an Anthropology of Nation Building and Unbuilding in Israel presents twenty-two original essays offering a critical survey of the anthropology of Israel inspired by Alex Weingrod, emeritus professor and pioneering scholar of Israeli anthropology. In the late 1950s Weingrod’s groundbreaking ethnographic research of Israel’s underpopulated south complicated the dominant social science discourse and government policy of the day by focusing on the ironies inherent in the project of Israeli nation building and on the process of migration prompted by social change.
Drawing from Weingrod’s perspective, this collection considers the gaps, ruptures, and juxtapositions in Israeli society and the cultural categories undergirding and subverting these divisions.
Organized into four parts, the volume examines our understanding of Israel as
a place of difference,
the disruptions and integrations of diaspora,
the various permutations of Judaism, and
the role of symbol in the national landscape and in Middle Eastern studies considered from a comparative perspective.
These essays illuminate the key issues pervading, motivating, and frustrating Israel’s complex ethnoscape..
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[book] A FIFTY-YEAR SILENCE
A 50 YEAR SILENCE
LOVE, WAR, AND A RUINED HOUSE IN FRANCE
By Miranda Richmond Mouillot
January 2015
Crown
A young woman moves across an ocean to uncover the truth about her grandparents' mysterious estrangement and pieces together the extraordinary story of their wartime experiences
In 1948, after surviving World War II by escaping Nazi-occupied France for refugee camps in Switzerland, the author's grandparents, Anna and Armand, bought an old stone house in a remote, picturesque village in the South of France. Five years later, Anna packed her bags and walked out on Armand, taking the typewriter and their children. Aside from one brief encounter, the two never saw or spoke to each other again, never remarried, and never revealed what had divided them forever.
A Fifty-Year Silence is the deeply involving account of Miranda Richmond Mouillot's journey to find out what happened between her grandmother, a physician, and her grandfather, an interpreter at the Nuremberg Trials, who refused to utter his wife's name aloud after she left him. To discover the roots of their embittered and entrenched silence, Miranda abandons her plans for the future and moves to their stone house, now a crumbling ruin; immerses herself in letters, archival materials, and secondary sources; and teases stories out of her reticent, and declining, grandparents. As she reconstructs how Anna and Armand braved overwhelming odds and how the knowledge her grandfather acquired at Nuremberg destroyed their relationship, Miranda wrestles with the legacy of trauma, the burden of history, and the complexities of memory. She also finds herself learning how not only to survive but to thrive – making a home in the village and falling in love.
With warmth, humor, and rich, evocative details that bring her grandparents' outsize characters and their daily struggles vividly to life, A Fifty-Year Silence is a heartbreaking, uplifting love story spanning two continents and three generations.
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[book] God'll Cut You Down
The Tangled Tale of a White Supremacist,
a Black Hustler, a Murder, and How I Lost
a Year in Mississippi
by John Safran
December 2014
Riverhead
An unlikely journalist, a murder case in Mississippi, and a fascinating literary true crime story in the style of Jon Ronson.
A notorious white supremacist named Richard Barrett was brutally murdered in Mississippi in 2010 by a young black man named Vincent McGee. At first the murder seemed a twist on old Deep South race crimes. But then new revelations and complications came to light. Maybe it was a dispute over money rather than race—or, maybe and intriguingly, over sex.
John Safran, a young white Jewish Australian documentarian, had been in Mississippi and interviewed Barrett for a film on race. When he learned of Barrett’s murder, he returned to find out what happened and became caught up in the twists and turns of the case. During his time in Mississippi, Safran got deeper and deeper into this gothic southern world, becoming entwined in the lives of those connected with the murder—white separatist frenemies, black lawyers, police investigators, oddball neighbors, the stunned families, even the killer himself. And the more he talked with them, the less simple the crime—and the people involved—seemed to be. In the end, he discovered how profoundly and indelibly complex the truth about someone’s life—and death—can be.
This is a brilliant, haunting, hilarious, unsettling story about race, money, sex, and power in the modern American South from an outsider’s point of view.
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[book] Congress and the Shaping of the Middle East
by Kirk Beattie
Simmons College
January 13, 2015
Seven Stories Press
The upside-down logic of US policy in the Middle East is one of the great foreign policy conundrums today precisely because it touches on so many different problematic areas. The March 2006 article by Walt and Meersheimer that appeared under the title The Israel Lobby in the London Review of Books, and the bestselling book that followed, attributed our pro-Israel policy to the power of the lobby itself. Others, including Chomsky, have criticized this approach as overly simplistic. Longtime Middle East watcher Professor Kirk Beattie seeks to arrive at a deeper understanding by looking closely at the inner workings of Congress. Beattie analyzes staffing, campaign funding, bipartisan alliances within the Senate and the House, and the agenda-driven allocation of foreign aid.
He addresses the many internal and external pressures that impact such processes. His findings, based on interviews with members of Congress and their staff and years of research, are laid out in straight-talking prose that untangles the complexity of the issue.
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[book] JEWISH MAD MEN
ADVERTISING AND THE DESIGN OF
THE AMERIAN JEWISH EXPERIENCE
By Kerri P. Steinberg
January 2015
Rutgers University Press
It is easy to dismiss advertising as simply the background chatter of modern life, often annoying, sometimes hilarious, and ultimately meaningless. But Kerri P. Steinberg argues that a careful study of the history of advertising can reveal a wealth of insight into a culture. In Jewish Mad Men, Steinberg looks specifically at how advertising helped shape the evolution of American Jewish life and culture over the past one hundred years.
Drawing on case studies of famous advertising campaigns—from Levy’s Rye Bread (“You don’t have to be Jewish to love Levy’s”) to Hebrew National hot dogs (“We answer to a higher authority”)—Steinberg examines advertisements from the late nineteenth-century in New York, the center of advertising in the United States, to trace changes in Jewish life there and across the entire country. She looks at ads aimed at the immigrant population, at suburbanites in midcentury, and at hipster and post-denominational Jews today.
In addition to discussing campaigns for everything from Manischewitz wine to matzoh, Jewish Mad Men also portrays the legendary Jewish figures in advertising—like Albert Lasker and Bill Bernbach—and lesser known “Mad Men” like Joseph Jacobs, whose pioneering agency created the brilliantly successful Maxwell House Coffee Haggadah. Throughout, Steinberg uses the lens of advertising to illuminate the Jewish trajectory from outsider to insider, and the related arc of immigration, acculturation, upward mobility, and suburbanization.
Anchored in the illustrations, photographs, jingles, and taglines of advertising, Jewish Mad Men features a dozen color advertisements and many black-and-white images. Lively and insightful, this book offers a unique look at both advertising and Jewish life in the United States.
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[book] THE YOUNG T.E. LAWRENCE
by Anthony Sattin
January 2015
Norton
An intimate biography of the years that turned T. E. Lawrence into Lawrence of Arabia.
Lawrence of Arabia's heroism during the Arab revolt and his disgust at the subsequent betrayal of the Arabs in the postwar negotiations have become the stuff of legend.
But T. E. Lawrence’s adventures in the Levant began long before the outbreak of war. This intimate biography is the first to focus on Lawrence in his twenties, the untold story of the awkward archaeologist from Oxford who, on first visiting "The East," fell in love with Arab culture and found his life's mission.
Lawrence was not always styled ‘T.E.’ or even ‘Edward’. As a child, he was called plain ‘Ned.’ Obsessed with notions of chivalry, he spent his summer holidays cycling around England, making brass rubbings of crusaders’ tombs; his boyhood bedroom was ‘hung with treasures found on these outings… life-size figures of knights in armor and priests in elaborate vestments’. Later he took up archaeology at a time when teens could bribe workmen into giving them antiquities for the local museum.
Before graduating college, he rode his bike 2400 miles across France and also in Syria to explore castles. He had a chaste bro-mance with a Syrian man named Ahmad, who later dies of Typhus. He was secretive and clever and arrogant and brashe. Perfectly suited for work in military intelligence.
Few people realize that Lawrence’s classic autobiography, Seven Pillars of Wisdom, was not the first book to carry that iconic title. Lawrence himself burned his original draft. Anthony Sattin here uncovers the story Lawrence wanted to conceal: the truth of his birth, his tortuous relationship with a dominant mother, his deep affection for an Arab boy, and the personal reasons that drove him from student to spy.
Drawing on surviving letters, diaries, and accounts from close confidantes, Sattin brings a biographer’s eye for detail and a travel writer's verve to Lawrence's extraordinary journeys through the region with which his name is forever connected. In a masterful parallel narrative, The Young T. E. Lawrence charts the maturation of the man and the incipient countries he treasured, both coming of age at a time when the world’s foundations were coming undone.
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[book] America's Great Game
The CIA’s Secret Arabists
and the Shaping of the Modern Middle East
by Hugh Wilford
Basic Books
Received several awards in 2014.
From the 9/11 attacks to waterboarding to drone strikes, relations between the United States and the Middle East seem caught in a downward spiral. And all too often, the Central Intelligence Agency has made the situation worse. But this crisis was not a historical inevitability—far from it. Indeed, the earliest generation of CIA operatives was actually the region’s staunchest western ally.

In America’s Great Game, celebrated intelligence historian Hugh Wilford reveals the surprising history of the CIA’s pro-Arab operations in the 1940s and 50s by tracing the work of the agency’s three most influential—and colorful—officers in the Middle East. Kermit “Kim” Roosevelt was the grandson of Theodore Roosevelt and the first head of CIA covert action in the region; his cousin, Archie Roosevelt, was a Middle East scholar and chief of the Beirut station. The two Roosevelts joined combined forces with Miles Copeland, a maverick covert operations specialist who had joined the American intelligence establishment during World War II. With their deep knowledge of Middle Eastern affairs, the three men were heirs to an American missionary tradition that engaged Arabs and Muslims with respect and empathy. Yet they were also fascinated by imperial intrigue, and were eager to play a modern rematch of the “Great Game,” the nineteenth-century struggle between Britain and Russia for control over central Asia. Despite their good intentions, these “Arabists” propped up authoritarian regimes, attempted secretly to sway public opinion in America against support for the new state of Israel, and staged coups that irrevocably destabilized the nations with which they empathized. Their efforts, and ultimate failure, would shape the course of U.S.–Middle Eastern relations for decades to come.

Based on a vast array of declassified government records, private papers, and personal interviews, America’s Great Game tells the riveting story of the merry band of CIA officers whose spy games forever changed U.S. foreign policy.
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[book] MARISSA MAYER AND THE FIGHT TO SAVE YAHOO!
By Nicholas Carlson
January 2015
Twelve / Hachette
Mayer is Lutheran, but the book is on this page, because it is simply amazing and a must read for anyone working in technology and business. A must read for anyone who ever had to complete a performance review or anyone who uses General Electric/Jack Welch's review method.
A page-turning, warts-and-all narrative about Marissa Mayer's efforts to remake Yahoo as well as her own rise from Stanford University undergrad to CEO of a $30 billion corporation by the age of 38.
When Yahoo hired star Google executive Mayer to be its CEO in 2012 employees rejoiced. They put posters on the walls throughout Yahoo's California headquarters. On them there was Mayer's face and one word: HOPE. But one year later, Mayer sat in front of those same employees in a huge cafeteria on Yahoo's campus and took the beating of her life. Her hair wet and her tone defensive, Mayer read and answered a series of employee-posed questions challenging the basic elements of her plan. There was anger in the room and, behind it, a question: Was Mayer actually going to be able to do this thing?
MARISSA MAYER AND THE FIGHT TO SAVE YAHOO! is the inside story of how Yahoo got into such awful shape in the first place, Marissa Mayer's controversial rise at Google, and her desperate fight to save an Internet icon.
In August 2011 hedge fund billionaire Daniel Loeb took a long look at Yahoo and decided to go to war with its management and board of directors. Loeb then bought a 5% stake and began a shareholder activist campaign that would cost the jobs of three CEOs before he finally settled on Google's golden girl Mayer to unlock the value lurking in the company. As Mayer began to remake Yahoo from a content company to a tech company, an internal civil war erupted.
In author Nicholas Carlson's capable hands, this riveting book captures Mayer's rise and Yahoo's missteps as a dramatic illustration of what it takes to grab the brass ring in Silicon Valley. And it reveals whether it is possible for a big lumbering tech company to stay relevant in today's rapidly changing business landscape.
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[book] FORGIVING MAXIMO ROTHMAN
a novel
By AJ Sidransky
Berwick
NATIONAL JEWISH BOOK AWARD FINALIST
On a chilly autumn night in New York, the lives of two men born decades and continents apart collide when Max Redmond is found bludgeoned in his Washington Heights apartment. While investigating the crime, Detective Tolya Kurchenko comes across the dead man's diaries, written by Redmond over four decades. He hopes the diaries will lead him to the killer. In fact, they help him sort out the complexities of his own identity. Spanning 65 years and three continents — from Hitler's Europe to the decaying Soviet Empire of the 1970s, and revealing the little-known history of Sosua, a Jewish settlement in the jungles of the Dominican Republic — A. J. Sidransky's debut novel leads us into worlds long gone, and the lives of people still touched by those memories.
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[book] I Lived on Butterfly Hill
by Marjorie Agosin
Illustrated by Lee White
Berwick
NATIONAL JEWISH BOOK AWARD FINALIST
An eleven-year-old’s world is upended by political turmoil in this “lyrically ambitious tale of exile and reunification” (Kirkus Reviews) from an award-winning poet, based on true events in Chile.
Celeste Marconi is a dreamer. She lives peacefully among friends and neighbors and family in the idyllic town of Valparaiso, Chile—until one day when warships are spotted in the harbor and schoolmates start disappearing from class without a word. Celeste doesn’t quite know what is happening, but one thing is clear: no one is safe, not anymore.
The country has been taken over by a government that declares artists, protestors, and anyone who helps the needy to be considered “subversive” and dangerous to Chile’s future. So Celeste’s parents—her educated, generous, kind parents—must go into hiding before they, too, “disappear.” Before they do, however, they send Celeste to America to protect her.
As Celeste adapts to her new life in Maine, she never stops dreaming of Chile. But even after democracy is restored to her home country, questions remain: Will her parents reemerge from hiding? Will she ever be truly safe again?
Accented with interior artwork, steeped in the history of Pinochet’s catastrophic takeover of Chile, and based on many true events, this multicultural ode to the power of revolution, words, and love is both indelibly brave and heartwrenchingly graceful.
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[book] The Disappearance of Daniel Klein
a novel
by Cynthia Hagan
January 27, 2015
Preston
The Disappearance of Daniel Klein chronicles the story of a boy magician with mismatched eyes (one blue, one green) who captures the dark interest of a Nazi research doctor. Despite growing up as a Jewish orphan in the midst of World War II, Daniel Klein still believes in the miraculous and the good and all that comes with it. He finds solace in magic, spends his afternoon hours pulling silver coins from the air and turning white handkerchiefs red, proving again and again that things are not always as they seem. But on one night, with one little boy decision, Daniel is put on a trajectory that threatens not only his resilient spirit but also his very life. When he and his friends sneak out of their orphanage to retrieve a family heirloom Daniel left behind while playing that day, they unknowingly give up their only chance to avoid deportation to a concentration camp. At that camp resides Karl Vendel, an awkward and obsessive Nazi research doctor who takes a dark interest in Daniel s rare eye color. As Daniel struggles to cope with the conditions of the camp and the impending loss of his sight, he finds himself increasingly confused, unable to separate imagination from reality. And as he begins to witness miraculous, near otherworldly things, Daniel wonders if he is losing his sanity or if something from the beyond is trying to help him survive. Penned by award winning screenwriter, Cynthia Hagan, The Disappearance of Daniel Klein is a story about the bonds of childhood friendship and the transcending power of belief. More, it begs us to ask the question... is there life beyond life as we know it?
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[book] THE PARTNERSHIP
BRECHT, WEILL, THREE WOMEN
AND GERMANY ON THE BRINK
BY PAMELA KATZ
January 2015
Doubleday Nan Talese
Among the most creative and outsized personalities of the Weimar Republic, that sizzling yet decadent epoch between the Great War and the Nazis' rise to power, were the renegade poet Bertolt Brecht and the rebellious avant-garde composer Kurt Weill. These two young geniuses and the three women vital to their work—actresses Lotte Lenya and Helene Weigel and writer Elizabeth Hauptmann—joined talents to create the theatrical and musical masterworks The Threepenny Opera and The Rise and Fall of the City of Mahagonny, only to split in rancor as their culture cracked open and their aesthetic and temperamental differences became irreconcilable. The Partnership is the first book to tell the full story of Brecht and Weill's impulsive, combustible partnership, the compelling psychological drama of one of the most important creative collaborations of the past century. It is also the first book to give full credit where it is richly due to the three women whose creative gifts contributed enormously to their masterworks. And it tells the thrilling and iconic story of artistic daring entwined with sexual freedom during the Weimar Republic's most fevered years, a time when art and politics and society were inextricably mixed.
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[book] SAUL BELLOW:
NOVELS 1984-2000
By Saul Bellow
Library of America
January 2015
For his centennial (June 10, 2015), The Library of America and editor James Wood present the final volume in the definitive edition of Saul Bellow’s complete novels. In the last stage of his unparalleled career—which included winning the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1976—Saul Bellow remained an uproarious comic storyteller, a provocative thinker deeply engaged with the intellectual cross-currents of his time, and a magnificent prose stylist.
Gathered here are four shorter works—What Kind of Day Did You Have? (1984), A Theft (1989), The Bellarosa Connection (1989), and The Actual (1997)—along with More Die of Heartbreak (1987), a novel that “changes the way you see everything” (Martin Amis), and Bellow’s extraordinary valedictory, Ravelstein (2000), about a professor of political philosophy made suddenly famous by an unlikely bestseller. Brimming with Bellow’s characteristic wit and ebullience, but imbued with the awareness of approaching death, Bellow’s final book is an unforgettable meditation on love and friendship, eros and mortality.

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[book] THE GATEWAYS HAGGADAH
A SEDER FOR THE WHOLE FAMILY
By Rebecca Redner
Behrman House
January 2015
The Gateways Haggadah welcomes families with children of all abilities and disabilities to a Passover celebration that is accessible for the whole family. Step-by-step directions for every element of the Passover seder are clearly illustrated with more than 70 vibrant photographs. Each prayer’s meaning is illuminated by the use of over 150 picture communication symbols developed by Mayer-Johnson,™ the leading creator of symbol-adapted special education materials to assist individuals in overcoming their speech, language, and learning challenges.
In this way, seder participants can experience Passover through clear, direct language and through rich and varied images.This easy-to-hold, concise Haggadah is respectful to all participants, whatever their abilities, and ensures that all can take part meaningfully in a complete Passover seder that lasts about 30 minutes.
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[book] The Baseball Haggadah
A Festival of Freedom
and Springtime in 15 Innings
by Rabbi Sharon Forman
with Lisa J Teitelbaum and
a Foreword by Ryan and Jon Daniels
Winter 2015
Don’t be a hater.
Give it a chance
Rabbi Forman is a brilliant educator in Westchester NY

Why is this night different from all other nights of the year; and what does the game of baseball have to do with the Festival of Passover and the seder?
Incorporating images and language from another springtime ritual, this baseball themed Passover Haggadah retells the story of the Israelites' Exodus from slavery in Egypt with faithfulness to the contours of a traditional seder. By holding up the Exodus next to the concept of a beloved national pastime, connections are made that cast light on the Passover story in new and unexpected patterns.
This Haggadah with its vivid illustrations will capture the imagination of seder participants of all ages (from little leaguers to adults). By infusing an old ritual with thought provoking readings and new insights, this Haggadah may stand alone as the sole text at a religious school model seder or can be used as a supplementary Haggadah in traditional or liberal homes. Values taught at the seder, such as love of freedom, kindness to strangers, and concern for others, are celebrated in this user friendly text with particular sensitivity to gender equality and transliteration for non-Hebrew readers. With Moses as the team captain for the Israelites and Pharaoh heading up the Taskmasters, the lineups struggle for dominance. God throws the ultimate "splitter," making way for the Israelites to cross the Sea of Reeds. Each participant takes a turn up at bat as a reader. There is a 7th Inning Stretch, during which the children can go to the door to search for and welcome the presence of Elijah. Ultimately, there is praise and joy and celebration. Freedom has been won. The Israelites, have made it safely home, and springtime is renewed on a field of green.
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[book] The Night That Unites Passover Haggadah:
Teachings, Stories, and Questions
from Rabbi Kook, Rabbi Soloveitchik,
and Rabbi Carlebach
Edited by Aaron Goldscheider
Illustrated by Aitana Perlmutter
URIM
This book is the first Haggadah that brings together the teachings of three of the most influential and brilliant Rabbinic personalities of the 20th century: Rabbi Kook, Rabbi Shlomo Carlebach, and Rabbi Joseph Soloveitchik. The Night That Unites also offers a special section of contemporary readings and stories related to the Land of Israel and the Holocaust. Suggested questions are offered as a way of encouraging and guiding discussion at the Seder that will enhance the Passover night experience, and illustrations depicting all 15 steps of the Seder are featured throughout.

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[book] The Lieberman Open Orthodox Haggadah
by Rabbi Shmuel Herzfeld
2015
Gefen
The Lieberman Open Orthodox Haggadah (the Orlofsky Edition) addresses some of the burning issues of our times through the lens of the rituals and texts of the Seder night. As we recognize that in every generation we are to seek liberation and freedom, this Haggadah demonstrates an activism that stems from rather than being stymied by our ancient traditions. Open Orthodoxy is a stream of Orthodoxy that combines a strict adherence to Jewish law with an openness and flexibility on certain contemporary issues. With contributions from prominent and original thinkers and an introduction to the term Open Orthodoxy from Rabbi Avi Weiss, this Haggadah discusses some of these cutting-edge concerns such as women as clergy within Orthodoxy (i.e., the Maharat phenomenon), the agunah crisis, and the interaction between Jews and Gentiles.
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[book] The Unorthodox Haggadah
A Dogma-free Passover for
Jews and Other Chosen People
by Nathan Phillips
2015
Andrews McMeel
A God-free Haggadah for Jews who enjoy the cultural aspects of the religion but not so much the religious/theology ones.
It combines traditions from all over the world with what the author sees as funny and snarky wit, pop culture references, and surreal interactive rituals.

The Unorthodox Haggadah says it skips the boring parts of the seder ritual. Ritual is at the core of every culture. This book offers the ritual with what some will find funny and irreverent text.

Sample text: Let's begin by drinking the blood of a virgin lamb off the tip of a flaming golden scimitar. In the event that you've de-virginized your lamb or misplaced your scimitar, use wine. Now, we toast the Israelites for rolling out of Egypt in time and generally being clever. Here are a few things they've invented since 1901: Jeans, lipstick, Hollywood, the fax machine, psychoanalysis, and the weekend. Thanks for getting us out of Egypt before shit got too real. Drink the second cup of wine while leaning to the left.

Huffington Post, the center for intelligent religious discussion wrote, “…light up your seder.”
Mediabistro wrote that it is an affront
Tablet Magazine wrote, “Redefine Bitter Herbs…slightly insane.”
Heeb Magazine wrote, "It’s the Passover you never knew you always wanted...While there are many (many!) different Haggadah versions out there, this one is hands down our favorite (sorry Maxwell house). Genuinely funny, which puts it head and shoulders above 99.9% of the treacly crap people foist on unsuspecting seder guests to try to fool them into thinking they’re actually enjoying themselves.”

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[book] And Then Another Sheep Turned Up
by Laura Gehl
Amy Adele (Illus)
Kar Ben
January 2015
Mama set another place. Papa found an extra seat. Hannah squeezed to make more space, Thrilled to have a guest to greet. Uh-oh! As the sheep family Passover seder begins, more and more guests show up!

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[book] Scarlett and Sam:
Escape from Egypt
By Eric A. Kimmel
Kar Ben
January 2015
One minute, twins Scarlett and Sam are bickering about who's going to read the Four Questions at the Passover seder. The next minute, they've been swept up by Grandma Mina's time-traveling carpet and dumped in the ancient Egyptian desert! And as if being stranded 3,000 years in the past isn't bad enough, they also find their fellow Hebrews suffering in slavery. So they team up with Moses, Aaron, and Miriam to help free the slaves. The future's looking bright! But the story they know so well doesn't turn out the way they expected...
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[book] IS IT PASSOVER YET ?
By Chris Barash
Whitman
2015
It's time to clean the house, set out our best dishes, and fill our homes with food and family to celebrate the joyous holiday of Passover! In this sweet story, join one family as they gather with loved ones to share the joy of togetherness and freedom that Passover brings.
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[book] A PATH IN THE MIGHTY WATERS
SHIPBOARD LIFE AND ATLANTIC CROSSINGS
TO THE NEW WORLD
BY Stephen Berry (Simmons)
Yale
January 13, 2015
The passage from the old world to the new took months. It was like being in a uterus and being reborn.

In October 1735, James Oglethorpe’s Georgia Expedition set sail from London, bound for Georgia. Two hundred and twenty-seven passengers boarded two merchant ships accompanied by a British naval vessel and began a transformative voyage across the Atlantic that would last nearly five months. Chronicling their passage in journals, letters, and other accounts, the migrants described the challenges of physical confinement, the experiences of living closely with people from different regions, religions, and classes, and the multi-faceted character of the ocean itself.
Using their specific journey as his narrative arc, Stephen Berry’s A Path in the Mighty Waters tells the broader and hereto underexplored story of how people experienced their crossings to the New World in the eighteenth-century. During this time, hundreds of thousands of Europeans – mainly Irish and German – crossed the Atlantic as part of their martial, mercantile, political, or religious calling. Histories of these migrations, however, have often erased the ocean itself, giving priority to activities performed on solid ground. Reframing these histories, Berry shows how the ocean was more than a backdrop for human events; it actively shaped historical experiences by furnishing a dissociative break from normal patterns of life and a formative stage in travelers’ processes of collective identification. Shipboard life, serving as a profound conversion experience for travelers, both spiritually and culturally, resembled the conditions of a frontier or border zone where the chaos of pure possibility encountered an inner need for stability and continuity, producing permutations on existing beliefs.
Drawing on an impressive array of archival collections, Berry’s vivid and rich account reveals the crucial role the Atlantic played in history and how it has lingered in American memory as a defining experience..
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least a passing acquaintanceship with the old country and older ways of making things.
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[book] KHIRBET KHIZEH
A Novel (paperback) by S. Yizhar
Pen name for Yizhar Smilansky (passed away in 2008)
Translated from Hebrew by Nicholas de Lange and Yaacob Dweck
Afterword by David Shulman
FS&G
Considered a modern Hebrew masterpiece, Khirbet Khizeh is an extraordinary and heartbreaking book that is destined to be a classic of world literature. Now, years after its 1949 post-War of Independence publication, it is available in English (published ni the UK in 2011, and now in the USA).

"Exhilarating . . . How often can you say about a harrowing, unquiet book that it makes you wrestle with your soul?" —Neel Mukherjee, The Times (London)

It’s 1948 and the Arab villagers of Khirbet Khizeh (a fictitious village) are about to be violently expelled from their homes (the author was an intelligence office whose group carried out a similar expulsion).
A young Israeli soldier who is on duty that day finds himself battling on two fronts: with the villagers and, ultimately, with his own conscience (ambivalence, revulsion, complacency, resignation). The ‘operation’ leaves a ‘scar.’
The novella was published just months after the founding of the State of Israel and the end of the 1948 war, the novella Khirbet Khizeh was an immediate sensation when it first appeared. Since then, the book has continued to challenge and disturb, even finding its way onto the school curriculum in Israel. The various debates it has prompted would themselves make Khirbet Khizeh worth reading, but the novella is much more than a vital historical document: it is also a great work of art. Yizhar’s haunting, lyrical style and charged view of the landscape are in many ways as startling as his wrenchingly honest view of modern Israel’s primal scene.
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[book] Operation Paperclip:
The Secret Intelligence Program
that Brought Nazi Scientists to America
by Annie Jacobsen
BackBay Books – paperback reprint
January 20, 2015.
The author of the acclaimed bestseller Area 51 reveals the explosive dark secrets behind America's post-WWII science programs.
In the chaos following World War II, some of the greatest spoils of Germany's resources were the Third Reich's scientific minds. The U.S. government secretly decided that the value of these former Nazis' knowledge outweighed their crimes and began a covert operation code-named Paperclip to allow them to work in the U.S. without the public's full knowledge.
Drawing on exclusive interviews with dozens of Paperclip family members, colleagues, and interrogators, and with access to German archival documents (including papers made newly available by direct descendants of the Third Reich's ranking members), files obtained through the Freedom of Information Act, and lost dossiers discovered in government archives and at Harvard University, Annie Jacobsen follows more than a dozen German scientists through their postwar lives and into one of the most complex, nefarious, and jealously guarded government secrets of the 20th century.
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[book] Urban Origins of American Judaism
(George H. Shriver Lecture Series in
Religion in American History)
by Deborah Dash Moore
Univ of Georgia Press
The urban origins of American Judaism began with daily experiences of Jews, their responses to opportunities for social and physical mobility as well as constraints of discrimination and prejudice. Deborah Dash Moore explores Jewish participation in American cities and considers the implications of urban living for American Jews across three centuries. Looking at synagogues, streets, and snapshots, she contends that key features of American Judaism can be understood as an imaginative product grounded in urban potentials.
Jews signaled their collective urban presence through synagogue construction, which represented Judaism on the civic stage. Synagogues housed Judaism in action, its rituals, liturgies, and community, while simultaneously demonstrating how Jews Judaized other aspects of their collective life, including study, education, recreation, sociability, and politics. Synagogues expressed aesthetic aspirations and translated Jewish spiritual desires into brick and mortar. Their changing architecture reflects shifting values among American Jews.
Concentrations of Jews in cities also allowed for development of public religious practices that ranged from weekly shopping for the Sabbath to exuberant dancing in the streets with Torah scrolls on the holiday of Simhat Torah. Jewish engagement with city streets also reflected Jewish responses to Catholic religious practices that temporarily transformed streets into sacred spaces. This activity amplified an urban Jewish presence and provided vital contexts for synagogue life, as seen in the captivating photographs Moore analyzes.
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ONE OF MY PRIZED POSSESSIONS IS AN AUTOGRAPHED COPY OF JOHN LEWIS'S BOOK AS WELL AS HIS MEMOIR
[book] MARCH: BOOK TWO
MARCH – BOOK 2
by U.S. Congressman John Lewis
with Andrew Aydin
Illustrated by Nate Powell
January 2015
Top Shelf
Don't miss the long-awaited sequel to the #1 bestseller March: Book One! "With March, Congressman John Lewis takes us behind the scenes of some of the most pivotal moments of the Civil Rights Movement. In graphic novel form, his first-hand account makes these historic events both accessible and relevant to an entire new generation of Americans." - LeVar Burton

"A must-read monument... As Rep. Lewis continues to carry the civil-rights flame, this graphic achievement is a firsthand beacon that burns ever relevant today." - The Washington Post
"This memoir puts a human face on a struggle that many students will primarily know from textbooks... Visually stunning, the black-and-white illustrations convey the emotions of this turbulent time... This insider's view of the civil rights movement should be required reading for young and old; not to be missed." - School Library Journal

Congressman John Lewis, an American icon and one of the key figures of the civil rights movement, continues his award-winning graphic novel trilogy with co-writer Andrew Aydin and artist Nate Powell, inspired by a 1950s comic book that helped prepare his own generation to join the struggle. Now, March brings the lessons of history to vivid life for a new generation, urgently relevant for today's world. After the success of the Nashville sit-in campaign, John Lewis is more committed than ever to changing the world through nonviolence - but as he and his fellow Freedom Riders board a bus into the vicious heart of the deep south, they will be tested like never before. Faced with beatings, police brutality, imprisonment, arson, and even murder, the movement's young activists place their lives on the line while internal conflicts threaten to tear them apart. But their courage will attract the notice of powerful allies, from Martin Luther King, Jr. to Attorney General Robert F. Kennedy... and once Lewis is elected chairman of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee, this 23-year-old will be thrust into the national spotlight, becoming one of the "Big Six" leaders of the civil rights movement and a central figure in the landmark 1963 March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom..
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SEE ALSO BOOK ONE:
[book]





















[book] TUCSON JO
a YA NOVEL
BY CAROLE MATOS
Fictive Press
2014 National Jewish Book Award Finalist Feisty fourteen-year-old Josephine Fiedler is reluctant to support her father's bid for mayor of Tucson in 1882: "I could be sealing my fate, helping to elect someone who wants nothing more than my docility." With a mind of her own, Jo is in constant conflict with her father and demands nothing less than the freedom he promised after uprooting the family from "civilized" Boston to the Wild West of Arizona because of his health. When trouble erupts during the election campaign and her father's opponent attacks him for being an Israelite, Jo has to reconsider her position and even what it means to be a Jew. Inspired by Tucson's first Jewish mayor, Tucson Jo is packed with derring-do while dealing with serious moral issues.
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[book] Once Upon A Revolution:
An Egyptian Story
by Thanassis Cambanis
January 2015
Simon & Schuster
An award-winning journalist tells the inside story of the 2011 Egyptian revolution by following two courageous and pivotal leaders—and their imperfect decisions that changed the world.
In January 2011, in Cairo’s Tahrir Square, a group of strangers sparked a revolution. Basem, an apolitical middle-class architect, jeopardized the lives of his family when he seized the chance to improve his country. Moaz, a contrarian Muslim Brother, defied his own organization to join the opposition.
These revolutionaries had little more than their idealism with which to battle the secret police, the old oligarchs, and a power-hungry military determined to keep control. Basem was determined to change the system from within and became one of the only revolutionaries to win a seat in parliament. Moaz took a different course, convinced that only street pressure from youth movements could dismantle the old order.
Thanassis Cambanis tells the story of the noble dreamers who brought Egypt to the brink of freedom, and the dark powerful forces that—for the time being—stopped them short. But he also tells a universal story of inspirational people willing to transform themselves in order to transform their society…and the world.
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[book] PERIPERHY
Israel's Search for Middle East Allies
by Yossi Alpher (TAU, Mossad)
Rowman and Littlefield
Since its establishment after World War II, the State of Israel has sought alliances with non-Arab and non-Muslim countries and minorities in the Middle East, as well as Arab states geographically distant from the Arab-Israel conflict. The text presents and explains this regional orientation and its continuing implications for war and peace.
It examines Israel's strategy of outflanking, both geographically and politically, the hostile Sunni Arab Middle East core that surrounded it in the early decades of its sovereign history, a strategy that became a pillar of the Israeli foreign and defense policy. This “periphery doctrine” was a grand strategy, meant to attain the major political-security goal of countering Arab hostility through relations with alternative regional powers and potential allies. It was quietly abandoned when the Sadat initiative and the emerging coexistence between Israel and Jordan reflected a readiness on the part of the Sunni Arab core to deal with Israel politically rather than militarily.
For a brief interval following the 1991 Madrid conference and the 1993 Oslo accords, Israel seemed to be accepted by all its neighbors, prompting then Foreign Minister Shimon Peres to muse that it could even consider joining the Arab League. Yet this periphery strategy had been internalized to some extent in Israel’s strategic thinking and it began to reappear after 2010, following a new era of Arab revolution. The rise of political Islam in Egypt, Turkey, Gaza, southern Lebanon and possibly Syria, coupled with the Islamic regime in Iran, has generated concern in Israel that it is again being surrounded by a ring of hostile states—in this case, Islamists rather than Arab nationalists.
The book analyzes Israel’s strategic thinking about the Middle East region, evaluating its success or failure in maintaining both Israel's security and the viability of Israeli-American strategic cooperation. It looks at the importance of the periphery strategy for Israeli, moderate Arab, and American, and European efforts to advance the Arab-Israel peace process, and its potential role as the Arab Spring brings about greater Islamization of the Arab Middle East. Already, Israeli strategic planners are talking of "spheres of containment" and "crescents" wherein countries like Cyprus, Greece, Azerbaijan, and Ethiopia constitute a kind of new periphery.
By looking at Israel’s search for Middle East allies then and now, the book explores a key component of Israel’s strategic behavior. Written in an accessible manner for all students, it provides a better understanding of Israel’s role in the Middle East region and its Middle East identity
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[book] CONVERTS TO JUDAISM
STORIES FROM BIBLICAL TIMES TO TODAY
By Lawrence Epstein
Rowman and Littlefield
January 2015
From the biblical story of Ruth to the star conversion of Elizabeth Taylor, Converts to Judaism tells the stories of people who have converted to Judaism throughout history. The book introduces readers to origins of Judaism and shares the first conversion stories of the people who helped the early Jewish faith grow. Subsequent chapters trace the trajectory of Judaism through the ages while highlighting the stories of converts—both well-known and lesser-known—and how they shaped the tradition. The book includes not only the story of Warder Cresson, who was put on trial for insanity after converting to Judaism, but also famous celebrities who became Jewish such as Marilyn Monroe and Sammy Davis, Jr.
Written by a noted expert on the conversion process, Converts to Judaism serves as a unique resource to people considering the challenging path of conversion and an illustration of the important, and sometimes surprising, role Jewish converts have always played in Jewish life.
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[book] The Strategist
Brent Scowcroft and the Call of
National Security
by Bartholomew Sparrow
PublicAffairs
January 27, 2015
For more than thirty years, Brent Scowcroft has played a central role in American foreign policy. Scowcroft helped manage the American departure from Vietnam, helped plan the historic breakthrough to China, urged the first President Bush to repel the invasion of Kuwait, and worked to shape the West’s skillful response to the collapse of the Soviet empire. And when US foreign policy has gone awry, Scowcroft has quietly stepped in to repair the damage. His was one of the few respected voices in Washington to publicly warn the second President Bush against rushing to war in Iraq.
The Strategist offers the first comprehensive examination of Brent Scowcroft’s career. Author Bartholomew Sparrow details Scowcroft’s fraught relationships with such powerful figures as Henry Kissinger (the controversial mentor Scowcroft ultimately outgrew), Alexander Haig (his one-time rival for Oval Office influence), and Condoleezza Rice (whose career Scowcroft helped launch—and with whom he publicly broke over Iraq).
Through compelling narrative, in-depth research, and shrewd analysis, The Strategist brings color and focus to the complex and often secretive nature of US foreign policy—an intellectual battlefield on which personalities, ideas, and worldviews clash, dramatically shaping the world in which we live.
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FEBRUARY 2015 BOOKS




[book] Memory Unearthed
The Lódz Ghetto Holocaust Photographs of Henryk Ross
Edited and authored by Bernice Eisenstein, Robert Jan van Pelt
Michael Mitchell, Eric Beck Rubin
and Maia-Mari Sutnik
February 2015
From 1941 to 1944, the Polish Jewish photographer Henryk Ross (1910–1991) was a member of an official team documenting the implementation of Nazi policies in the Lódz Ghetto in Poland. Covertly, he captured on film scores of both quotidian and intimate moments of Jewish life. In 1944, he buried thousands of negatives in an attempt to save this secret record. After the war, Ross returned to Poland to retrieve them. Although some were destroyed by nature and time, many negatives survived.
Memory Unearthed presents a selection of the nearly 3,000 surviving images—along with original prints and other archival material including curfew notices and newspapers—from the permanent collection at the Art Gallery of Ontario. Ross’s images offer a startling and moving new representation of one of humanity’s greatest tragedies. Striking for both their historical content and artistic quality, his photographs have a raw intimacy and emotional power that remain undiminished. .
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[book] Believer:
My Forty Years in Politics
by David Axelrod
February 2015
Penguin Press
David Axelrod, 59, has always been a BELIEVER.
At age 5, he fell for JFK in NYC
Whether as a young journalist investigating city corruption, a campaign consultant guiding underdog candidates against entrenched orthodoxy, or as senior adviser to the president during one of the worst crises in American history, Axelrod held fast to his faith in the power of stories to unite diverse communities and ignite transformative political change. Now this legendary strategist, the mastermind behind Barack Obama’s historic election campaigns, shares a wealth of stories from his forty-year journey through the inner workings of American democracy. Believer is the tale of a political life well lived, of a man who never gave up on the deepest promises our country has to offer, and the costs for his success (marriage, sacrifice, not being always around for his daughter who suffers from epilepsy)

Believer reveals the roots of Axelrod’s devotion to politics and his faith in democratic change. As a child of the ’60s in New York City, Axelrod worked his first campaigns during a tumultuous decade that began with soaring optimism and ended in violence and chaos. As a young newspaperman in Chicago during the 1970s and ’80s, Axelrod witnessed another world transformed when he reported on the dissolution of the last of the big city political machines—Richard Daley, Dan Rostenkowski, and Harold Washington—along with the emergence of a dynamic black independent movement that ultimately made Obama’s ascent possible.

After cutting his teeth in the rollicking world of Chicago journalism, Axelrod switched careers to become a political strategist. His unorthodox tactics during his first campaign helped him get Paul Simon unexpectedly elected to the Senate, and soon Axelrod’s counsel was sought by the greatest lights of the Democratic Party. Working for path breakers like Hillary Clinton, Deval Patrick, and Rahm Emanuel—and morally conflicted characters like Rod Blagojevich and John Edwards—Axelrod, for better and worse, redefined the techniques by which modern political campaigns are run.

The heart of Believer is Axelrod’s twenty-year friendship with Barack Obama, a warm partnership that inspired both men even as it propelled each to great heights. Taking a chance on an unlikely candidate for the U.S. Senate, Axelrod ultimately collaborated closely with Obama on his political campaigns, and served as the invaluable strategist who contributed to the tremendous victories of 2008 and 2012. Switching careers again, Axelrod served as senior adviser to the president during one of the most challenging periods in national history: working at Obama’s side as he battled an economic disaster; navigated America through two wars; and fought to reform health care, the financial sector, and our gridlocked political institutions. In Believer, Axelrod offers a deeper and richer profile of this extraordinary figure—who in just four years vaulted from the Illinois State Senate to the Oval Office—from the perspective of one who was at his side every step of the way.

Spanning forty years that include corruption and transformation, turmoil and progress, Believer takes readers behind the closed doors of politics even as it offers a thrilling call to democratic action. Axelrod’s Believer is a powerful and inspiring memoir enlivened by the charm and candor of one of the greatest political strategists in recent American history.
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[book] The Ice Queen
A Novel
by Nele Neuhaus
Winter 2015
The body of 92-year-old Jossi Goldberg, Holocaust survivor and American citizen, is found shot to death execution style in his house near Frankfurt. A five-digit number is scrawled in blood at the murder scene. The autopsy reveals an old and unsuccessfully covered tattoo on the corpse's arm—a blood type marker once used by Hitler's SS. Pia Kirchhoff and Oliver Bodenstein are faced with a riddle. Was the old man not Jewish after all? Who was he, really? Two more, similar murders happen—one of a wheelchair-bound old lady in a nursing home, and one of a man with a cellar filled with Nazi paraphernalia—and slowly the connections between the victims becomes evident: All of them were lifelong friends with Vera von Kaltensee, baroness, well-respected philanthropist, and head of an old, rich family that she rules with an iron fist. Pia and Oliver follow the trail, which leads them all the way back to the end of World War II and the area of Poland that then belonged to East Prussia. No one is who they claim to be, and things only begin to make sense when the two investigators realize what the bloody number stands for, and uncover an old diary and an eyewitness who is finally willing to come forward.
Nele Neuhaus's The Ice Queen is a character- and plot-driven mystery about revenge, power, and long-forgotten and covered up secrets from a time in German history that still affects the present.

NELE NEUHAUS is one of the most widely read German mystery writers and the author of Snow White Must Die and Bad Wolf. More than four million copies of her books are currently in print. She lives near Frankfurt, Germany
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[book] Bewilderments
Reflections on the Book of Numbers
by Avivah Gottlieb Zornberg
February 2015
Schocken
From one of the most acclaimed biblical commentators at work today, the third book in her award-winning series of commentaries on the Hebrew Bible.
The Book of Numbers is the narrative of a great failure. What should have been for the Israelites a brief journey from Mount Sinai to the Holy Land becomes a forty-year death march. Both before and after the devastating report of the spies, the narrative centers on the people's desire to return to Egypt, to undo the miraculous work of the Exodus. At its heart are speeches of complaint and lament, expressing a profound existential skepticism. But by contrast, in the narrative of the Book of Numbers that is found in mystical and Hassidic sources, the generation of the wilderness emerges as one of extraordinary spiritual experience, receivers of the Torah to the fullest extent, fed on miracles and nurtured directly by God: a generation of ecstatic faith. Its true subject is the greatness of a people impassioned by God, human partners in an unprecedented conversation with the Deity. Drawing on kabbalistic sources, the Hassidic commentators on the Book of Numbers depict a people who transcend prudential considerations in order to follow God into the wilderness, and whose spiritual yearning comes to full expression there.
This view of the wilderness history invites us to a different kind of listening to the many cries of distrust, lament, resentment that issue from the Israelites throughout the Book of Numbers. Is there a way to integrate this narrative of dark murmurings, of obsessive fantasies of return to Egypt, with the celebration of a love-intoxicated wilderness discourse? The question touches not only on the language the Israelites speak but also on the very nature of human utterance. Who are these people? Who are we who listen to them? What effect does the cumulative trauma of slavery, the miracles of Exodus, the revelation at Sinai have on a nation that is beginning to speak? In Bewilderments, Avivah Gottlieb Zornberg posits fascinating answers to these questions through the magnificent literary, scholarly, and psychological analysis of the text that is her trademark.
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See Also The Beginnings of Desire. Reflections on Genesis
and
The Particulars of Rapture. Reflections on Exodus












[book] Screening Room
Family Pictures
by Alan Lightman
February 2015
Pantheon
From the acclaimed author of the international best seller Einstein’s Dreams, here is a lyrical memoir of Memphis from the 1930s through the 1960s: the music and the racism, the early days of the movies, and a powerful grandfather whose ghost continues to haunt the family.
  Alan Lightman’s grandfather M.A. Lightman was the family’s undisputed patriarch: it was his movie theater empire that catapulted the family to prominence in the South; his fearless success that both galvanized and paralyzed his descendants, haunting them for a half century after his death. In this lyrical and impressionistic memoir, Lightman writes about returning to Memphis in an attempt to understand the people he so eagerly left behind forty years earlier. As aging uncles and aunts begin telling family stories, Lightman rediscovers his southern roots and slowly realizes the errors in his perceptions of his grandfather and of his own father, who had been crushed by M.A. Here is a family saga set against a throbbing century of Memphis—the rhythm and blues, the barbecue and pecan pie, and the segregated society—that includes personal encounters with Elvis, Martin Luther King, Jr., and E. H. “Boss” Crump. At the heart of it all is a family haunted by the ghost of the domineering M.A., and the struggle of the author to understand his conflicted loyalties to his father and grandfather.
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200,000 COPIES WERE SOLD SWEDEN… and that is not a big country
We are all on the road from Auschwitz
[book] A BRIEF STOP ON THE
ROAD TO AUSCHWITZ
BY Göran Rosenberg / Goran Rosenberg
February 24, 2015
The Other Press
Volksrant said the “Rosenberg is a new Primo Levi”
The New Republic wrote it “is an unforgettable book about memory, grief, and fate.”
All of Göran’s books start in the same place. With him and his father.
Göran Jakob Rosenberg is a Swedish journalist and author. He is the son of David and Hala Rosenberg from ?ódz in Poland, who both came to Sweden after having survived concentration camps during World War II. The were teeage lovers in the ghetto, and in 1946, found that they both had survived. This shattering memoir is about Goran’s father’s attempt to survive the aftermath of Auschwitz in a small industrial town in Sweden won the prestigious August Prize
On August 2, 1947 a young man gets off a train in a small Swedish town to begin his life anew. Having endured the ghetto of ?ódz, the death camp at Auschwitz-Birkenau, the slave camps and transports during the final months of Nazi Germany, his final challenge is to SURVIVE THE SURVIVAL. He had no youth. He had no childhood. He had no family members left. He had no hometown. He had no memory except the shadows of persecution. He had to begin anew. He had to strive to light and future and not shadows. He survived for 15 years.
In this intelligent and deeply moving book, Göran Rosenberg returns to his own childhood to tell the story of his father: walking at his side, holding his hand, trying to get close to him. It is also the story of the chasm between the world of the child, permeated by the optimism, progress, and collective oblivion of postwar Sweden, and the world of the father, darkened by the long shadows of the past.
Did I mention that Goran’s mother gave him his father’s letters from 1946, and this was the enlightenment.

See a video here: http://channel.louisiana.dk/video/g%C3%B6ran-rosenberg-road-auschwitz#.UTCpxcedOUA.facebook

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[book] BEING HUMAN IN A BUDDHIST WORLD
AN INTELLECTUAL HISTORY OF MEDICINE
IN EARLY MODERN TIBET
By Janet Gyatso (Harvard)
February 2015
Columbia University Press
Critically exploring scientific thought and its relation to religion in traditional Tibetan medicine, Being Human expands our sense of Tibetan cultural history, unpacking the intersection of early modern sensibilities and religious ideals during the time of the Fifth Dalai Lama. Studying the adaptation of Buddhist concepts and values to medical concerns, the book also advances an appreciation of Buddhism's role in the development of Asian and global civilization.
Through its unique focus and sophisticated reading of source materials, Being Human captures the religious character of medicine in Tibet during a period when it facilitated a singular involvement in issues associated with modernity and empirical science, all without discernible influence from the European Enlightenment. The book opens with the bold achievements of medical illustration, commentary, and institution building, then looks back to the work of earlier thinkers, tracing a subtle dialectic between scriptural and empirical authority on questions of history and the nature of human anatomy. It follows key differences between medicine and Buddhism in attitudes toward gender and sex, and the shaping of medical ethics to serve both the physician and the patient's well-being. Being Human ultimately finds that Tibetan medical scholars absorbed ethical and epistemological categories from Buddhism yet shied away from ideal system and absolutes, embracing instead the imperfectability of the human condition.
Jew-Bu scholar, Professor Gyatso is the Hershey Professor of Buddhist Studies at Harvard and Harvard Divinity
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[book] The European Union,
Anti-Semitism, and the
Politics of Denial
by Amy Elman
January 2015
University of Nebraska Press
Copublished with the Vidal Sassoon International Center for the Study of Antisemitism, this study asks if the European Union (EU) has the capacity or the will to counter antisemitism. The desire to counter antisemitism was a significant impetus toward the formation of the EU in the twentieth century and now prejudice against Jews threatens to subvert that goal in the twenty-first. The European Union, Antisemitism, and the Politics of Denial offers an overview of the circumstances that obliged European political institutions to take action against antisemitism and considers the effectiveness of these interventions by considering two seemingly dissimilar EU states, Austria and Sweden.
This examination of the European Union’s strategy for countering antisemitism discloses escalating prejudice within the EU in the aftermath of 9/11. The author contends that Europe’s political actors have responded to the challenge and provocation of antisemitism with only sporadic rhetoric and inconsistent commitment, a halfhearted strategy for countering antisemitism that exacerbates skepticism toward EU institutions and their commitments to equality and justice. This exposition of the insipid character of the EU’s response simultaneously suggests alternatives that might mitigate the subtle and potentially devastating creep of antisemitism in Europe.
This study offers a new approach insofar as scholarly considerations of the EU’s attempts to combat racism rarely focus on antisemitism, while scholarship on antisemitism rarely considers the political context of the European Union.
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STICKY PAGES AND OTHER THOUGHTS OF CELEBRITY CULTURE
QUIZZED IN THE BOOK
AND CULTURAL CRITICISMS ON CHER TO LENA
By BILLY EICHNER
Coming in 2015






[book] Unlikely Warrior
A Jewish Soldier in Hitler's Army
by Georg Rauch
February 2015
FS&G
The 2006 memoir of George Rauch, who was one quarter Jewish in Vienna and helped his mother hide Jews. Drafter into the German army in WWII, he served on the Russian front reluctantly and battled more for his own survival than for Hitler. Rauch passed away in 2006.
Rauch finds himself near death many times, but his talents as a shortwave radio operator, chef, and even harmonica player all play a role in his survival. Captured by the Russians in the autumn of 1944, Rauch faces brutality and near-fatal illness as a POW. Recruitment for Russian espionage saves his life this time, but his story isn't over yet. Based on eighty letters sent home from the Russian trenches, a riveting tale of paradox and survival during World War II.


















[book] I'm Not a Terrorist,
But I've Played One On TV:
Memoirs of a Middle Eastern
Funny Man Hardcover
by Maz Jobrani
February 2015
Simon & Schuster
A hilarious and moving memoir of growing up Iranian in America, and the quest to make it in Hollywood without having to wear a turban, tote a bomb, or get kicked in the face by Chuck Norris.
When he first started out in show business, Maz Jobrani endured suggestions that he spice up his stand-up act by wearing “the outfit,” fielded questions about rising gas prices, and got called an F’in Eye-ranian for being involved in the Iran hostage crisis even though he was only eight years old at the time—in fact, these things happened so often that he began to wonder: Could I be a terrorist without even knowing it?
Having emigrated with his family to the US during the Iranian Revolution, Maz spent most of his youth desperately trying to fit in with his adopted culture—whether that meant learning to play baseball or religiously watching Dallas with his female relatives. But none of his attempts at assimilation made a difference to casting directors, who only auditioned him for the role of kebab-eating, bomb-toting, extremist psychopath.
In this laugh-out-loud memoir, Maz shares his struggle to build an acting career in post-9/11 Hollywood—from playing a terrorist on 24 to playing a terrorist opposite Chuck Norris to his mother asking, “Vhy you alvays terrorist?!” (Followed by, “Vhy you couldn’t be doctor?!”) But finally, through patience, determination, and only the occasional unequivocal compromising of his principles, he found a path to stardom. And he also learned the proper way to die like a bad guy on TV.



















[book] PRUDENCE
A NOVEL
BY DAVID TREUER
February 2015
Riverhead
A haunting and unforgettable novel about love, loss, race, and desire in World War II–era America.
On a sweltering day in August 1942, Frankie Washburn returns to his family’s rustic Minnesota resort for one last visit before he joins the war as a bombardier, headed for the darkened skies over Europe. Awaiting him at the Pines are those he’s about to leave behind: his hovering mother; the distant father to whom he’s been a disappointment; the Indian caretaker who’s been more of a father to him than his own; and Billy, the childhood friend who over the years has become something much more intimate. But before the homecoming can be celebrated, the search for a German soldier, escaped from the POW camp across the river, explodes in a shocking act of violence, with consequences that will reverberate years into the future for all of them and that will shape how each of them makes sense of their lives.
With Prudence, Treuer delivers his most ambitious and captivating novel yet. Powerful and wholly original, it’s a story of desire and loss and the search for connection in a riven world; of race and class in a supposedly more innocent era. Most profoundly, it’s about the secrets we choose to keep, the ones we can’t help but tell, and who—and how—we’re allowed to love.


















[book] MEDIEVAL CHRISTIANITY
A NEW HISTORY
By KEVIN MADIGAN
2015
Yale University Press
For many, the medieval world seems dark and foreign—a miraculous, brutal, and irrational time of superstition and strange relics. The pursuit of heretics, the Inquisition, the Crusades and the domination of the “Holy Land” come to mind. Yet the medieval world produced much that is part of our world today, including universities, the passion for Roman architecture and the emergence of the gothic style, pilgrimage, the emergence of capitalism, and female saints.
This new narrative history of medieval Christianity, spanning from A.D. 500 to 1500, attempts to combine both what is unfamiliar and what is familiar to readers. Elements of novelty in the book include a steady focus on the role of women in Christianity; the relationships among Christians, Jews, and Muslims; the experience of ordinary parishioners; the adventure of asceticism, devotion and worship, and instruction through drama, architecture, and art. Madigan expertly integrates these areas of focus with more traditional themes, such as the evolution and decline of papal power, the nature and repression of heresy, sanctity and pilgrimage, the conciliar movement, and the break between the old Western church and its reformers.
Illustrated with more than forty photographs of physical remains, this book promises to become an essential guide to a historical era of profound influence.


















[book] LIES, FIRST PERSON
A NOVEL
BY GAIL HAREVEN
Translated by Dalya Bilu
February 2015
Open Letter
From the 2010 winner of the Best Translated Book Award comes a harrowing, controversial novel about a woman's revenge, Jewish identity, and how to talk about Adolf Hitler in today's world.
Elinor's comfortable life—popular newspaper column, stable marriage, well-adjusted kids—is totally upended when she finds out that her estranged uncle is coming to Jerusalem to give a speech asking forgiveness for his decades-old book, Hitler, First Person.
A shocking novel that galvanized the Jewish diaspora, Hitler, First Person was Aaron Gotthilf's attempt to understand—and explain—what it would have been like to be Hitler. As if that wasn't disturbing enough, while writing this controversial novel, Gotthilf stayed in Elinor's parent's house and sexually assaulted her "slow" sister.
In the time leading up to Gotthilf's visit, Elinor will relive the reprehensible events of that time so long ago, over and over, compulsively, while building up the courage—and plan—to avenge her sister in the most conclusive way possible: by murdering Gotthilf, her own personal Hilter.
Along the way to the inevitable confrontation, Gail Hareven uses an obsessive, circular writing style to raise questions about Elinor's mental state, which in turn makes the reader question the veracity of the supposed memoir that they're reading. Is it possible that Elinor is following in her uncle's writerly footpaths, using a first-person narrative to manipulate the reader into forgiving a horrific crime?


















[book] TANAKH
AN OWNER’S MANUAL
Authorship, Canonization, Masoretic Text
Exegesis, Modern Scholarship, and Pedogagy
By Moshe Sokolow
Afterword by Rabbi Hayyim Angel
February 2015
URIM
Tanakh, an Owner’s Manual offers both a modern and Orthodox approach to the historical and literary frameworks within which the Hebrew Bible should be learned and appreciated. It covers the authorship of its 24 constituent books, their designation as sacred literature (canonization), the development of the Masoretic text, a survey of classic medieval and modern commentaries, the interaction of traditional exegesis and modern biblical scholarship, and a gradual curriculum for developing biblical literacy and comprehension. It reflects the author’s insights as they developed over 40 years of studying and teaching, and will be of interest to teachers, students, and anyone who wants a deeper understanding of the Hebrew Bible.

Moshe Sokolow is the Fanya Gottesfeld-Heller Professor and associate dean of the Azrieli Graduate School of Jewish Education at Yeshiva University. He has also served as professor of bible at Yeshiva College, Stern College, and the Bernard Revel Graduate School of Jewish Studies. He is the author of Studies in the Weekly Parashah based on the Lessons of Nehama Leibowitz, and coeditor of The Azrieli Papers, a series of books on contemporary Jewish educational research.

















[book] Mastering the West
Rome and Carthage at War
by Dexter Hoyos
February 2015
Oxford University Press
To say the Punic Wars (264-146 BC) were a turning point in world history is a vast understatement. This bloody and protracted conflict pitted two flourishing Mediterranean powers against one another, leaving one an unrivalled giant and the other a literal pile of ash. To later observers, a collision between these civilizations seemed inevitable and yet to the Romans and Carthaginians at the time hostilities first erupted seemingly out of nowhere, with what were expected to be inconsequential results.
Mastering the West offers a thoroughly engrossing narrative of this century of battle in the western Mediterranean, while treating a full range of themes: the antagonists' military, naval, economic, and demographic resources; the political structures of both republics; and the postwar impact of the conflicts on the participants and victims. The narrative also investigates questions of leadership and the contributions and mistakes of leaders like Hannibal, Fabius the Delayer, Scipio Africanus, Masinissa, and Scipio Aemilianus. Dexter Hoyos, a leading expert of the period, treats the two great powers evenly, without neglecting the important roles played by Syracuse, Macedon, and especially Numidia.
Written with verve in a clear, accessible style, with a range of illustrations and newly-commissioned maps, Mastering the West will be the most reliable and engaging narrative of this pivotal era in ancient history.

















[book] YES, AND:
HOW IMPROVISATION REVERSES “NO, BUT” THINKING
AND IMPROVES CLARITY AND COLLABORATION
Lessons from Second City
By Kelly Leonard and Tom Yorton
February 3, 2015
HarperBusiness Press
Executives from The Second City—the world’s premier comedy theater and school of improvisation—reveal improvisational techniques that can help any organization develop innovators, encourage adaptable leaders, and build transformational businesses.
For more than fifty years, The Second City comedy theater in Chicago has been a training ground for some of the best comic minds in the industry—including John Belushi, Bill Murray, Gilda Radner, Mike Myers, Steve Carell, Stephen Colbert, and Tina Fey. But it also provides one-of-a-kind leadership training to cutting-edge companies, nonprofits, and public sector organizations—all aimed at increasing creativity, collaboration, and teamwork.
The rules for leadership and teamwork have changed, and the skills that got professionals ahead a generation ago don’t work anymore. Now The Second City provides a new toolkit individuals and organizations can use to thrive in a world increasingly shaped by speed, social communication, and decentralization. Based on eight principles of improvisation, Yes, And helps to develop these skills and foster them in high-potential leaders and their teams, including:
• Mastering the ability to co-create in an ensemble
• Fostering a “yes, and” approach to work
• Embracing failure to accelerate high performance
• Leading by listening and by learning to follow
• Innovating by making something out of nothing

Yes, And is a must-read for professionals and organizations, helping to develop the invaluable leadership skills needed to succeed today..

















[book] THE NIGHTINGALE
A NOVEL
BY KRISTIN HANNAH
February 2015
St. Martin's Press
In love we find out who we want to be.
In war we find out who we are.
FRANCE, 1939

In the quiet village of Carriveau, Vianne Mauriac says goodbye to her husband, Antoine, as he heads for the Front. She doesn’t believe that the Nazis will invade France...but invade they do, in droves of marching soldiers, in caravans of trucks and tanks, in planes that fill the skies and drop bombs upon the innocent. When a German captain requisitions Vianne’s home, she and her daughter must live with the enemy or lose everything. Without food or money or hope, as danger escalates all around them, she is forced to make one impossible choice after another to keep her family alive.
Vianne’s sister, Isabelle, is a rebellious eighteen-year-old girl, searching for purpose with all the reckless passion of youth. While thousands of Parisians march into the unknown terrors of war, she meets Gäetan, a partisan who believes the French can fight the Nazis from within France, and she falls in love as only the young can...completely. But when he betrays her, Isabelle joins the Resistance and never looks back, risking her life time and again to save others.
With courage, grace and powerful insight, bestselling author Kristin Hannah captures the epic panorama of WWII and illuminates an intimate part of history seldom seen: the women’s war. The Nightingale tells the stories of two sisters, separated by years and experience, by ideals, passion and circumstance, each embarking on her own dangerous path toward survival, love, and freedom in German-occupied, war-torn France--a heartbreakingly beautiful novel that celebrates the resilience of the human spirit and the durability of women. It is a novel for everyone, a novel for a lifetime.

















[book] AFTER BIRTH
a novel
by Elisa Albert
February 2015
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
A widely acclaimed young writer’s fierce new novel, in which childbirth and new motherhood are as high stakes a proving ground as any combat zone.
A year has passed since Ari gave birth to Walker, though it went so badly awry she has trouble calling it “birth” and still she can't locate herself in her altered universe. Amid the strange, disjointed rhythms of her days and nights and another impending winter in upstate New York, Ari is a tree without roots, struggling to keep her branches aloft.
When Mina, a one-time cult musician — older, self-contained, alone, and nine-months pregnant —moves to town, Ari sees the possibility of a new friend, despite her unfortunate habit of generally mistrusting women. Soon they become comrades-in-arms, and the previously hostile terrain seems almost navigable.
With piercing insight, purifying anger, and outrageous humor, Elisa Albert issues a wake-up call to a culture that turns its new mothers into exiles, and expects them to act like natives. Like Lionel Shriver’s We Need to Talk About Kevin and Anne Enright’s The Gathering, this is a daring and resonant novel from one of our most visceral writers.

















[book] THE NEW PASSOVER MENU
BY PAULA SHOYER
February 3, 2015
Sterling Epicure
Chef Paula Shoyer is the author of the popular THE HOLIDAY KOSHER BAKER and KOSHER BAKER cookbooks. She resides in the DC area with her husband and four children. The fans of her baking books would ask her about Passover recipes even in the Summer, all around the country, so she decided to write book to answer their recipe questions. She organizes the recipes and stories into eight menus: one for each of the eight nights of Passover. Lunch ideas are also given for each day of the Chag - with page numbers of the mixed and matched recipes provided for your ease.

The eight menus are (1) The Updated Ashkenazic Seder Menu (9 recipes); (2) The International Seder Menu (8 recipes); (3) Shabbat Menu for Passover (5 recipes); (4) Yomtov Menu (8 recipes); (5) French Dairy Menu (4 recipes); (6) Italian Vegetarian Menu (4 recipes); (7) BBQ Dinner Menu (4 recipes); (8) Easy Chicken Menu (4 recipes) – but there is no complementary Hard Chicken Menu; (9) The Passover Breakfast (5 recipes); and (10) DESSERTS, of course (with 15 recipes).

In the Introduction, Shoyer discusses what many see as the Passover Food Oppression, and her mission to provide delicious, inspired, and elegant holiday meals within the dietary and culinary framework or spiritual restrictions of Passover.

Some of the standout recipes for me were:
Banana Haroset, which is gluten free and makes enough for 25 portions. It uses 3 bananas, ground walnuts, apples, wine and more; and Shoyer's gefilte fish gets ge'filled with salmon and served with a slaw of ginger, orange, mango, arugula, and avocado. Shoyer tried so many times to boil gefilte fish from scratch, and once it turned into a fish soup. So she writes, we should save time and stress and use a frozen fish loaf/roll and just enhance it with salmon filets. Her chicken soup adds in chicken meatballs and zucchini spaghetti, while her matzoh balls use ginger and cilantro.
The Peruvian Roasted Chicken with Salsa Verde is based on a Peruvian recipe by her friend Betty Supo. She also has a recipe for Brisket Osso Buco (as in the style of veal that one finds in Italian cuisine) She recommends using 2nd cut of brisket, not first cut. Inspired by NYC's kosher Tevere84 restaurant, she adds garlic gremolata to the brisket as a last step. Did I mention that her kugel is of asparagus and zucchini.
The International Seder Menu makes a Middle Eastern Haroset of dates, figs, ginger, zest, wine, fruit, nutmeg and more a la Limor Dector. There are recipes for Sephardic Poached Fish in Pepper Sauce; a Whole Chicken Stuffed with Dried Fruit; Moroccan Spiced Short Ribs; and Gingered Red Pepper and Tomato Soup
Two of the four Shabbat Menu rcipes are for Caramelized Onion and Sweet Potato Soup and Smothered Chicken and Sage and Basil.
For Yomtov, Shoyer recommends a Zucchini based soup; Beet and Butternut Squash Salad; Lamb Stew with Mint, Apricots, and Pears; and Coconut Chicken Schnitzel which makes use of matzo cake meal.
Kale leads the French inspired menu with a Kale Caesar Salad. Shoyer lived in Geneva for three Passovers. She includes recipes for Southeastern French-style Gratin Dauphinois with Kosher for Passover Cheese; Ratatouille; and Seared Tuna with Olives and Capers.
The Italian menu pays tribute to her father, Reuben Marcus, who served in Italy during WWII, and her brother who loves eggplant. It includes recipes for a vegetable antipasti; Eggplant Parm; and Pan Seared Zucchini with Garlic. The BBQ menu leads with a Garlic Marinated Steak with Onion Jam. The Easy Chicken Menu highlights a recipe for Chicken Scaloppini with Mushrooms. Very easy.
Some of the Breakfast items are Passover Rolls; Waffles; and Crumb Cake Muffins. The Dessert items – many of which are gluten free - include torts (three of them); two pistachio based rolls; orange tea cake cupcakes; candy; cookies; biscotti; and a Passover Opera Cake (insert a Verdi Nabucco opera joke here?)


















[book] RED
A CRAYON'S STORY
By MICHAEL HALL
February 2015
Harper Collins
Ages 4 – 8
32 pp
A blue crayon mistakenly labeled as "red" suffers an identity crisis in the new picture book by the New York Times–bestselling creator of My Heart Is Like a Zoo and It's an Orange Aardvark!
Funny, insightful, and colorful, Red: A Crayon's Story, by Michael Hall, is about being true to your inner self and following your own path despite obstacles that may come your way.
Red has a bright red label, but he is, in fact, BLUE.
His teacher (a yellow #2 pencil) and 'scarlet' try to help him be red, to be practice more (let's draw strawberries!), his mother tries to help him be red by sending him out on a playdate (to mix more) with a yellow classmate (go draw a nice orange!, but it comes out.. greenish); his grandparents (silver and gray) told him to wear a red scarf; and the scissors try to help him be red by snipping his label so that he has room to breathe. Fuschia thinks he is not bright, Sunshine says give him some time, and Grape calls him lazy. Masking Tape says he is broken inside, and a sharpener says he is not sharp enough. But Red is miserable. He just can't be red, no matter how hard he tries!
ACTUALLY he is told to just try harder to be red, but he is blue
Finally, a brand-new friend offers a brand-new perspective, and Red discovers what readers have known all along. He's blue! (spoiler.. he is asked to draw water)
This funny, heartwarming, colorful picture book about finding the courage to be true to your inner self can be read on multiple levels, and it offers something for everyone!











[book] Bella's Gift
How One Little Girl Transformed
Our Family and Inspired a Nation
by Rick Santorum and Karen Santorum
and Elizabeth Santorum
February 2015
thomas nelson
You might not agree with his politics or thoughts or statements or what some say are conservative prejudice, but he has written a book with his family that you might separate from him and enjoy.
Rick and Karen Santorum’s story of life with Bella, their special-needs youngest child
Four days after Rick and Karen Santorum welcomed their eighth child into the world they were given the devastating news that their little girl, Bella, was going to die. They were told that her syndrome was 'not conducive to life.' When Rick and his older daughter was building a crib, he told her to save the box, since they might have to send the crib back. He is now remorseful for saying that. He is also remorseful for talking about Bella at an Iowa campaign stop at a church where he bared his soul, without the permission of his wife. They had agreed he would not do that to further his Presidential ambitions.
This family memoir explores what it means to embrace and celebrate the life of each person, and find hope, even in the midst of painful challenges.
Bella’s Gift is the story of how the entire family came together to love and care for Bella and how God (Thomas Nelson, the book's publisher, is a centuries old Christian author publisher) strengthened them during the storms and blessed their family with grace, peace, and joy.
Searchingly honest, faith filled, and surprisingly joyful, Bella’s Gift is a loving, lived-out testimony to the truth that everyone counts, even “the least of these.”











[book] Anonymous Soldiers
The Struggle for Israel, 1917-1947
by Bruce Hoffman
February 24, 2015
KNOPF
BRUCE HOFFMAN – the preeminent authority of terrorism and security studies – a former RAND leader - is the director of the Center for Security Studies and director of the Security Studies Program at Georgetown University’s Edmund A. Walsh School of Foreign Service. He is also a senior fellow at the U.S. Military Academy’s Combating Terrorism Center. His previous books include Inside Terrorism and The Failure of British Military Strategy within Palestine, 1939–1947.
A landmark history, based on newly available documents, of the battles between Jews, Arabs, and the British that led to the creation of Israel

Anonymous Soldiers brilliantly re-creates the crucial period in the establishment of Israel, chronicling the three decades of growing anticolonial unrest that culminated in the end of British rule and the UN resolution to create two separate states. This groundbreaking book tells in riveting, previously unknown detail the story of how Britain, in the twilight of empire, struggled and ultimately failed to reconcile competing Arab and Jewish demands and uprisings. Bruce Hoffman, America’s leading expert on terrorism, shines new light on the bombing of the King David Hotel, the assassination of Lord Moyne in Cairo, the leadership of Menachem Begin, the life and death of Abraham Stern, and much else. Above all, Hoffman shows exactly how the underdog “anonymous soldiers” of Irgun and Lehi defeated the British and set in motion the chain of events that resulted in the creation of the formidable nation-state of Israel.

This is a towering accomplishment of research and narrative, and a book that is essential to anyone wishing to understand not just the origins of modern-day Israel or the current situation in the Middle East, but also the methodology of terrorism. Drawing on previously untapped archival resources in London, Washington, D.C., and Jerusalem, Bruce Hoffman has written one of the most detailed and sustained accounts of a terrorist and counterterrorist campaign that may ever have been seen, and in doing so has cast light on one of the most decisive world events in recent history. This will be the definitive account of the struggle for Israel for years to come.




















[book] SAPIENS
A Brief History of Humankind
by Yuval Noah Harari, PhD (University of Oxford, Hebrew University)
February 10, 2015
HarperCollins
Fire made us dangerous
Gossip helped us cooperate
Agriculture made us hungry for mor (or s'mores)e
Mythology maintained law and order (afterlife, be good)
Money gave us something everyone can trust
Contradictions created culture
and Science made us the masters of creation
Yet None of these made us happy

From a renowned historian comes a groundbreaking narrative of humanity’s creation and evolution—a #1 international bestseller—that explores the ways in which biology and history have defined us and enhanced our understanding of what it means to be “human.”
One hundred thousand years ago, at least SIX DIFFERENT species of humans inhabited Earth. Yet today there is only one—homo sapiens. What happened to the others? And what may happen to us?

Most books about the history of humanity pursue either a historical or a biological approach, but Dr. Yuval Noah Harari breaks the mold with this highly original book that begins about 70,000 years ago with the appearance of modern cognition. From examining the role evolving humans have played in the global ecosystem to charting the rise of empires, Sapiens integrates history and science to reconsider accepted narratives, connect past developments with contemporary concerns, and examine specific events within the context of larger ideas.
Dr. Harari also compels us to look ahead, because over the last few decades humans have begun to bend laws of natural selection that have governed life for the past four billion years. We are acquiring the ability to design not only the world around us, but also ourselves. Where is this leading us, and what do we want to become?



















[book] Why Not Say What Happened:
A Sentimental Education
a memoir
by Morris Dickstein
February 9, 2015
Liveright
A renowned cultural critic tells his own deeply engaging story of growing up in the turbulent American culture of the postwar decades.

At once a coming-of-age story, an intellectual autobiography, and vivid cultural history, Why Not Say What Happened is an eloquent, gripping account of an intellectual and emotional education from one of our leading critics. In this "acutely observed, slyly funny memoir" (Molly Haskell), Morris Dickstein evokes his boisterous and close-knit Jewish family, his years as a yeshiva student that eventually led to fierce rebellion, his teenage adventures in the Catskills and in a Zionist summer camp, and the later education that thrust him into a life-changing world of ideas and far-reaching literary traditions. Dickstein brilliantly depicts the tension between the parochial religious world of his youth and the siren call of a larger cosmopolitan culture, a rebellion that manifested itself in a yarmulka replaced by Yankees cap, a Shakespeare play concealed behind a heavy tractate of the Talmud, and classes cut on Wednesday afternoons to take in the Broadway theater.

Tracing a path from the Lower East Side to Columbia University, Yale, and Cambridge, Dickstein leaves home, travels widely, and falls in love, breaking through to new experiences of intimacy and sexual awakening, only to be brought low by emotional conflicts that beset him as a graduate student—homesickness, a sense of cultural dislocation—issues that come to a head during a troubled year abroad. In Why Not Say What Happened we see Dickstein come into his own as a teacher and writer deeply engaged with poetry: the "daringly modern" Blake, the bittersweet "negotiations of time and loss" in Wordsworth, and the "shifting turns of consciousness itself" in Keats. While eloquently evoking the tumult of the sixties and a culture in flux, Why Not Say What Happened is enlivened by Dickstein's "Zelig-like presence at nearly every significant aesthetic and political turning of the second half of the American twentieth century" (Cynthia Ozick). Dickstein crafts memorable portraits of his own mentors and legendary teachers like Lionel Trilling, Peter Gay, F. R. Leavis, and Harold Bloom, who become inimitable role models. They provide him with a world-class understanding of how to read and nourish his burgeoning feeling for literature and history. In the tradition of classic memoirs by Alfred Kazin and Irving Howe, this frank and revealing story, at once keenly personal and broadly cultural, sheds light on the many different forms education can take.











[book] CATCH THE JEW !
BY TUVIA TENENBOM
February 2015
Gefen
It is from GEFEN, so it must be a good book, although it doesnt sound like my cup of tea
Catch the Jew! recounts the adventures of gonzo journalist Tuvia Tenenbom, who wanders around Israel and the Palestinian Authority for seven months in search of the untold truths in today's Holy Land.
With holy chutzpah, Tenenbom boldly goes where no Jew has gone before, at times risking his life as he assumes the identities of Tobi the German and even Abu Ali in order to probe into the many stories in this strange land and poke holes in all of them.
My skin is crawling just reading the description, but I guess some people will enjoy this candid camera sort of reporting

From the self-hating leftists in Tel Aviv to the self-promoting PLO execs in Ramallah, from the black-clad Haredim of Bet Shemesh to the glowing foreign human rights activists in Beit Hanina, from Jewish settlers and the Christians who come from abroad to toil with them to ardent Jerusalem monks and Bedouins in surprisingly glorious shacks, Tenenbom takes on the people of the land, getting to know them and disarming them as he breaks bread and mingles with anyone and everyone.

Does Palestinian wife number one hate the Jews more than she hates wife number two?
Who finances cash-rich NGOs pursuing a Judenrein Israel?
Who sets Palestinian olive groves on fire and why?
What is the emotional gravity that pulls idealistic human rights activists from other countries to Israel and only to Israel?
Who are the flaming feminists who sacrifice their lives for the rights of polygamists?
Whose land is this, anyway?

By turns poignant, enraging, and laugh-out-loud funny, this unique travelogue lays bare the intensity of this turbulent land in an unprecedented, eye-opening education, person by person, city by city, and meal by meal. You will never look at Israel the same way again.

















[book] Jewish Anxiety and the Novels of Philip Roth
by Brett Ashley Kaplan
Feb 2015
Bloomsbury Academic
Jewish Anxiety and the Novels of Philip Roth argues that Roth's novels teach us that Jewish anxiety stems not only from fear of victimization but also from fear of perpetration. It is impossible to think about Jewish victimization without thinking about the Holocaust; and it is impossible to think about the taboo question of Jewish perpetration without thinking about Israel. Roth's texts explore the Israel-Palestine question and the Holocaust with varying degrees of intensity but all his novels scrutinize perpetration and victimization through examining racism and sexism in America. Brett Ashley Kaplan uses Roth's novels as springboards to illuminate larger problems of victimization and perpetration; masculinity, femininity, and gender; racism and anti-Semitism.

For if, as Kaplan argues, Jewish anxiety is not only about the fear of oppression, and we can begin to see how these anxieties function in terms of fears of perpetration, then perhaps we can begin to unpack the complicated dynamics around the line between the Holocaust and Israel-Palestine.

Brett Ashley Kaplan is Professor and Conrad Humanities Scholar in the Program in Comparative and World Literature and the Program in Jewish Culture and Society at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, UIUC
















[book] VOICES IN THE BAND
A Doctor, Her Patients,
and How the Outlook on AIDS Care
Changed from Doomed to Hopeful
by Susan C. Ball, MD, MPH, MS
2015
MIT
"I am an AIDS doctor. When I began that work in 1992, we knew what caused AIDS, how it spread, and how to avoid getting it, but we didn't know how to treat it or how to prevent our patients' seemingly inevitable progression toward death. The stigma that surrounded AIDS patients from the very beginning of the epidemic in the early 1980s continued to be harsh and isolating. People looked askance at me: What was it like to work in that kind of environment with those kinds of people? My patients are 'those kinds of people.’ They are an array and a combination of brave, depraved, strong, entitled, admirable, self-centered, amazing, strange, funny, daring, gifted, exasperating, wonderful, and sad. And more. At my clinic most of the patients are indigent and few have had an education beyond high school, if that. Many are gay men and many of the patients use or have used drugs. They all have HIV, and in the early days far too many of them died. Every day they brought us the stories of their lives. We listened to them and we took care of them as best we could."—from the Introduction
Dr. Ball graduated from Dartmouth in '81 and received her Medical degree from the Medical College of Pennsylvania in '85. She received a MPH from Columbia University in 1990 and a MS in Narrative Medicine from Columbia in 2009. In 1992, fresh from residencies, sshe began her medical career taking care of patients with HIV in the Center for Special Studies, a designated AIDS care center at a Weill Cornell in New York City. Her unsentimental but moving memoir of her experiences bridges two distinct periods in the history of the epidemic: the terrifying early years in which a diagnosis was a death sentence and ignorance too often eclipsed compassion, and the introduction of antiviral therapies that transformed AIDS into a chronic, though potentially manageable, disease.
Voices in the Band also provides a new perspective on how we understand disease and its treatment within the context of teamwork among medical personnel, government agencies and other sources of support, and patients.
Deftly bringing back both the fear and confusion that surrounded the disease in the early 1990s and the guarded hope that emerged at the end of the decade, Dr. Ball effectively portrays the grief and isolation felt by both the patients and those who cared for them using a sharp eye for detail and sensitivity to each patient’s story. She also recounts the friendships, humor, and camaraderie that she and her colleagues shared working together to provide the best care possible, despite repeated frustrations and setbacks. As Dr. Ball and the team at CSS struggled to care for an undeRserved population even after game-changing medication was available, it became clear to them that medicine alone could not ensure a transition from illness to health when patients were suffering from terrible circumstances as well as a terrible disease.
Click book cover or title to read more.

















[book] What Good Is Grand Strategy?
Power and Purpose in American
Statecraft from Harry S. Truman
to George W. Bush
by Hal Brands
2015
Cornell
Grand strategy is one of the most widely used and abused concepts in the foreign policy lexicon. In this important book, Hal Brands explains why grand strategy is a concept that is so alluring—and so elusive—to those who make American statecraft. He explores what grand strategy is, why it is so essential, and why it is so hard to get right amid the turbulence of global affairs and the chaos of domestic politics. At a time when “grand strategy” is very much in vogue, Brands critically appraises just how feasible that endeavor really is.
Brands takes a historical approach to this subject, examining how four presidential administrations, from that of Harry S. Truman to that of George W. Bush, sought to “do” grand strategy at key inflection points in the history of modern U.S. foreign policy. As examples ranging from the early Cold War to the Reagan years to the War on Terror demonstrate, grand strategy can be an immensely rewarding undertaking—but also one that is full of potential pitfalls on the long road between conception and implementation. Brands concludes by offering valuable suggestions for how American leaders might approach the challenges of grand strategy in the years to come.
Click book cover or title to read more.

















It's called an I-phone, cuz it is about me me me... selfish I.
Animal Farm meets mortality meets factory farms meets Borden meets Flaubert meets the Israel-Palestinian conflict meets a pig's circumcision
[book] Holy Cow:
A Novel
by David Duchovny
February 3, 2015
FS&G
Before Mr. Duchovny became a well known actor in film and television, he was a grad student at Yale studying to be a tenured literature professor. He did not complete the PhD yet.
This is his first animal character novel
A rollicking, globe-trotting adventure with a twist: a four-legged heroine you won't soon forget
Elsie Bovary is a cow, and a pretty happy one at that--her long, lazy days are spent eating, napping, and chatting with her best friend, Mallory. One night, Elsie and Mallory sneak out of their pasture; but while Mallory is interested in flirting with the neighboring bulls, Elsie finds herself drawn to the farmhouse. Through the window, she sees the farmer's family gathered around a bright Box God (a television) – and what the Box God reveals about something called an "industrial meat farm" shakes Elsie's understanding of her world to its core.
There's only one solution: escape to a better, safer world. Will a cow be safe in India? Will a pig sort of be safe in Israel?

And so a motley crew is formed: Elsie; Jerry--excuse me, Shalom--a cranky, Torah-reading pig who's recently converted to Judaism; and Tom, a suave (in his own mind, at least) turkey who can't fly, but who can work an iPhone with his beak. Toting stolen passports and slapdash human disguises, they head for the airport. Elsie is our wise-cracking, pop-culture-reference-dropping, slyly witty narrator; Tom--who does eventually learn to fly (sort of)--dispenses psychiatric advice in a fake German accent; and Shalom, rejected by his adopted people in Jerusalem, ends up unexpectedly uniting Israelis and Palestinians. David Duchovny's charismatic creatures point the way toward a mutual understanding and acceptance that the world desperately needs.
Click book cover or title to read more.














MARCH 2015 BOOKS




[book] LEAVING BERLIN
A NOVEL
BY JOSEPH KANON
March 2015
Atria Books
From the bestselling author of Istanbul Passage—called a “fast-moving thinking man’s thriller” by The Wall Street Journal—comes a sweeping, atmospheric novel of postwar East Berlin, a city caught between political idealism and the harsh realities of Soviet occupation.
Berlin 1948. Almost four years after the war’s end, the city is still in ruins, a physical wasteland and a political symbol about to rupture. In the West, a defiant, blockaded city is barely surviving on airlifted supplies; in the East, the heady early days of political reconstruction are being undermined by the murky compromises of the Cold War. Espionage, like the black market, is a fact of life. Even culture has become a battleground, with German intellectuals being lured back from exile to add credibility to the competing sectors.
Alex Meier, a young Jewish writer, fled the Nazis for America before the war. But the politics of his youth have now put him in the crosshairs of the McCarthy witch-hunts. Faced with deportation and the loss of his family, he makes a desperate bargain with the fledgling CIA: he will earn his way back to America by acting as their agent in his native Berlin. But almost from the start things go fatally wrong. A kidnapping misfires, an East German agent is killed, and Alex finds himself a wanted man. Worse, he discovers his real assignment—to spy on the woman he left behind, the only woman he has ever loved. Changing sides in Berlin is as easy as crossing a sector border. But where do we draw the lines of our moral boundaries? Betrayal? Survival? Murder?





















[book] DATA AND GOLIATH
The Hidden Battles to Collect
Your Data and Control Your World
BY BRUCE SCHNEIER (Harvard Law)
March 2015
Norton
Telecom service providers know where your phonce is 24/7. Iy knows what stores you visit, when. It knows what and where and when you shop. It knows which phone (or person) you were with. It knows if you stayed over the home one night with another phone. All this data is being collected and one day it will be used to market to you or indict you.

Your cell phone provider tracks your location and knows who’s with you. Your online and in-store purchasing patterns are recorded, and reveal if you're unemployed, sick, or pregnant. Your e-mails and texts expose your intimate and casual friends. Google knows what you’re thinking because it saves your private searches. Facebook can determine your sexual orientation without you ever mentioning it.
The powers that surveil us do more than simply store this information. Corporations use surveillance to manipulate not only the news articles and advertisements we each see, but also the prices we’re offered. Governments use surveillance to discriminate, censor, chill free speech, and put people in danger worldwide. And both sides share this information with each other or, even worse, lose it to cybercriminals in huge data breaches.
Much of this is voluntary: we cooperate with corporate surveillance because it promises us convenience, and we submit to government surveillance because it promises us protection. The result is a mass surveillance society of our own making. But have we given up more than we’ve gained? In Data and Goliath, security expert Bruce Schneier offers another path, one that values both security and privacy. He shows us exactly what we can do to reform our government surveillance programs and shake up surveillance-based business models, while also providing tips for you to protect your privacy every day. You'll never look at your phone, your computer, your credit cards, or even your car in the same way again.



















[book] THE PARADOX OF LIBERATION
SECULAR REVOLUTIONS AND
RELIGIOUS COUNTERREVOLUTIONS
BY MICHAEL WALZER,
Emeritus Professor IAS-Princeton
March 2015
Yale
Many of the successful campaigns for national liberation in the years following World War II were initially based on democratic and secular ideals. Once established, however, the newly independent nations had to deal with entirely unexpected religious fierceness. Michael Walzer, one of America’s foremost political thinkers, examines this perplexing trend by studying India, Israel, and Algeria, three nations whose founding principles and institutions have been sharply attacked by three completely different groups of religious revivalists: Hindu militants, ultra-Orthodox Jews and messianic Zionists, and Islamic radicals.

In his provocative, well-reasoned discussion, Walzer asks why these secular democratic movements have failed to sustain their hegemony: Why have they been unable to reproduce their political culture beyond one or two generations? In a postscript, he compares the difficulties of contemporary secularism to the successful establishment of secular politics in the early American republic—thereby making an argument for American exceptionalism but gravely noting that we may be less exceptional today.

















[book] MODERN JEWISH COOKING
RECIPES AND CUSTOMS FOR TODAY'S KITCHEN
BY LEAH KOENIG
Photos by Sang An
March 2015
Chronicle Books
From the author of Hadassah's Everyday Cookbook
From a leading voice of the new generation of young Jewish cooks who are reworking the food of their forebears, this take on the cuisine of the diaspora pays homage to tradition while reflecting the values of the modern-day food movement. Author Leah Koenig shares 175 recipes showcasing handmade, seasonal, vegetable-forward dishes. Classics of Jewish culinary culture—such as latkes, matzoh balls, challah, and hamantaschen—are updated with smart techniques and vibrant spices. Approachable recipes for everything from soups to sweets go beyond the traditional, incorporating regional influences from North Africa to Central Europe. Featuring holiday menus and rich photography, this collection is at once a guide to establishing traditions and a celebration of the way we eat now.

















[book] The Community Table
Recipes & Stories from the
Jewish Community Center JCC in Manhattan & Beyond
by JCC Manhattan, Katja Goldman,
Lisa Rotmil, and Judy Bernstein Bunzl
March 24, 2015
Grand Central
The inside front cover has pictures of generations of Jews at play. There is the senior citizen, there is the young ivy league Jewish father with his child. It looks like a catalog of a local JCC. And why not? It is a cookbook published with a JCC

Across the continent, JCCs are cultural epicenters of modern Jewish life. The buildings are hives of activity; at any given moment, hundreds of people of all ages, backgrounds, interests, and opinions gather to engage in a myriad of activities. And nothing says community more than food.

While sitting down to enjoy a meal together is undeniably bonding, working together to prepare it is even more so. Now, three chefs who are longstanding members of the JCC Manhattan share classic recipes such as Weekly Challah, Latkes Four Ways, and Pumpkin Rugelach, plus an inspiring selection of contemporary dishes with a farm-to-table emphasis and international flavors: Fig and Fennel Bread, Iraqi Lamb Burgers, Brussels Sprouts with Pomegranate and Citrus Glaze, and much more. Holiday menu suggestions and a complete chart grouping recipes by dietary restriction (meat, pareve, dairy) are included as well.
With anecdotal contributions from JCCs all around the country, this cookbook highlights the JCC's vibrant, eclectic community-and celebrates all of its many flavors.













[book] The Easy Way Out Passover Cookbook
Paperback
by Mindy Ginsberg
March 2015
Gefen Books
Passover is coming -- dont panic! This contemporary kosher cookbook features a collection of over 100 recipes offering easy and delicious dishes to enhance your Passover experience. Whether preparing an elaborate seder-night feast or a simple brunch, this cookbook provides kitniyot-free recipes that the whole family will enjoy.
























NOT JUST FOR BAGELS
[book] United States of Bread:
Our Nation's Homebaking Heritage:
from Sandwich Loaves to Sourdough
by Adrienne Kane
Running Press
As American as apple pie? How about As American as freshly baked bread?. Before we became reliant on massed-produced supermarket loaves, The United States had a rich history of homemade bread recipes, from flaky and light Southern biscuits to hearty Boston Brown Bread -not to mention the uniquely tangy San Francisco Sourdough. Adrienne Kane has unearthed these vintage recipes, given them a modern twist where appropriate, and collected them all in United States of Bread. Both novices and experienced bakers can delight in these American favorites, including Pullman Loaves, Amish Dill, Cinnamon Raisin Swirl, New York Flatbread, Wild Rice Bread Stuffing, and lots more. United States of Bread is a charming collection that will inspire everyone to get in the kitchen to celebrate America’s home-baking legacy.




















[book] Eat Mexico:
Recipes from Mexico City's
Streets, Markets and Fondas
by Lesley Téllez
Kyle Books
In a city that suffers from agonizing traffic, crumbling infrastructure, and fetid air, thrives a vibrant gastronomic capital: Mexico City. Boasting regional influences from the northern Mexican border to Guatemala, the culinary pan-identity of the complex, flavorful city is what makes everyone talk. Amid the ever-growing media presence, like the recent Mexico City issues from Saveur and Swallow magazines, and the recent Mesamérica culinary conference, Lesley Téllez's Eat Mexico celebrates the rising fame of this city’s food and culture.
A love letter to the intricate, flavorful foods of Mexico City, told from the point of view of a young journalist who lived and ate there for four years, Eat Mexico is written in a friendly, accessible tone, unlocking the culinary identity of the city, and showcasing food from the city’s streets, markets, casual fondas, and the more rustic dishes located in the rural outskirts.
Many of these dishes are items Americans may not recognize: the football-shaped, bean-stuffed corn tlacoyo, topped with cactus and salsa; the tortas bulging with turkey confit and a peppery herb called pápalo; the chile-rubbed rabbit, slow-cooked until tender. The book ends on a personal note, highlighting the creative, Mexican-inspired dishes-like roasted poblano oatmeal-that Lesley cooks at home in New York with ingredients she came to know in Mexico. Foodies will be awed by the various regional cuisines and seduced by the new flavors, aromas, and textures of this culturally rich city. With stunning location photography to enjoy, new ingredients to explore, eclectic recipes to share and cultural adventures to engage in, adventurous cooks and armchair travelers alike will enjoy Lesley's Mexico City.
























[book] Eat. Nourish. Glow.
10 easy steps for losing weight,
looking younger & feeling healthier
by Amelia Freer
2015
Harper
Nutritional therapist and healthy eating expert Amelia Freer has helped her many celebrity clients, including Sam Smith and James Corden, to dispatch fad diets to the distant past whilst guiding them to a rejuvenated future. Now she can do the same for you.
Amelia Freer brings a fresh and unique voice to the field of holistic health. In this, her first book, she explains her 10 steps and provides over 25 enticing recipes to get you started on your path to optimum wellness.
Amelia guides you gently through her 10 steps: how to detox your store cupboards and restock with alternatives, how to understand the differences between good and bad fats, the dangers of hidden sugar in the food we eat and how to dump the wheat (one of the demons!) from your diet. Her ideas are all backed up by the latest findings in the field of nutrition and neuroscience.
Amelia includes a mouth watering selection of recipes, from delightful breakfast alternatives, such as Almond, Apricot and Rose Yogurt, light lunch ideas such as Crunchy Crab Salad and delicious mains such as Monkfish with a Broccoli and Ginger Mash. Wow your friends with the fiendish yet healthy sweet alternatives such as the Salted Caramels. There’s something for everyone in this book and with Amelia guiding you on the path to better health, losing weight and looking great has never been easier.
























[book] THE EMPIRE OF THE SENSES
A NOVEL
BY ALEXIS LANDAU
March 2015
Pantheon Books
A sweeping, gorgeously written debut novel of duty to family and country, passion, and blood ties that unravel in the charged political climate of Berlin between the wars.
Lev Pearlmutter, an assimilated, cultured German Jew, enlists to fight in World War I, leaving behind his gentile wife Josephine and their children, Franz and Vicki. Moving between Lev's and Josephine's viewpoints, Part I of the novel focuses on Lev's experiences on the Eastern Front—both in war and in love—which render his life at home a pale aftermath by comparison. Part II picks up in Berlin in 1927–1928: the Pearlmutter children, now young adults, grapple with their own questions: Franz, drawn into the Brown Shirt movement, struggling with his unexpressed homosexuality; and Vicki, seduced by jazz, bobbed hair, and falling in love with a young man who wants to take her to Palestine. Unlike most historical novels of this kind, The Empire of the Senses is not about the Holocaust but rather about the brew that led to it, and about why it was unimaginable to ordinary people like Lev and his wife. Plotted with meticulous precision and populated by characters who feel and dream to the fullest, it holds us rapt as cultural loss and ethnic hatred come to coexist with love, passion, and the power of the human spirit.

















[book] There Is Simply Too Much to Think About:
Collected Nonfiction
by Saul Bellow
March 2015
Viking Adult
A sweeping collection and a tribute to one of the most influential, daring, and visionary minds of the twentieth century
The year 2015 marks several literary milestones: the centennial of Saul Bellow’s birth, the tenth anniversary of his death, and the publication of Zachary Leader’s much anticipated biography. Bellow, a Nobel Laureate, Pulitzer Prize winner, and the only novelist to receive three National Book awards, has long been regarded as one of America’s most cherished authors. Here, Benjamin Taylor, editor of the acclaimed Saul Bellow: Letters, presents lesser-known aspects of the iconic writer.
Arranged chronologically, this literary time capsule displays the full extent of Bellow’s nonfiction, including criticism, interviews, speeches, and other reflections, tracing his career from his initial success as a novelist until the end of his life. Bringing together six classic pieces with an abundance of previously uncollected material, There Is Simply Too Much to Think About is a powerful reminder not only of Bellow’s genius but also of his enduring place in the western canon and is sure to be widely reviewed and talked about for years to come.


















[book] A DANGEROUS PLACE
A Maisie Dobbs Novel
by Jacqueline Winspear
March 17, 2015
Harper
Four years after she set sail from England, leaving everything she most loved behind, Maisie Dobbs at last returns, only to find herself in a dangerous place.
In Jacqueline Winspear‘s powerful story of political intrigue and personal tragedy, a brutal murder in the British garrison town of Gilbraltar leads Maisie into a web of lies, deceit, and peril.
Spring 1937. In the four years since she left England, Maisie Dobbs has experienced love, contentment, stability—and the deepest tragedy a woman can endure. Now, all she wants is the peace she believes she might find by returning to India. But her sojourn in the hills of Darjeeling is cut short when her stepmother summons her home to England; her aging father Frankie Dobbs is not getting any younger.
But on a ship bound for England, Maisie realizes she isn’t ready to return. Against the wishes of the captain who warns her, “You will be alone in a most dangerous place,” she disembarks in Gibraltar. Though she is on her own, Maisie is far from alone: the British garrison town is teeming with refugees fleeing a brutal civil war across the border in Spain.
Yet the danger is very real. Days after Maisie’s arrival, a photographer and member of Gibraltar’s Sephardic Jewish community, Sebastian Babayoff, is murdered, and Maisie becomes entangled in the case, drawing the attention of the British Secret Service. Under the suspicious eye of a British agent, Maisie is pulled deeper into political intrigue on “the Rock”—arguably Britain’s most important strategic territory—and renews an uneasy acquaintance in the process. At a crossroads between her past and her future, Maisie must choose a direction, knowing that England is, for her, an equally dangerous place, but in quite a different way. .


















[book] ME BEING ME IS EXACTLY AS INSANE
AS YOU BEING YOU
A YA Young Adult NOVEL
BY TODD HASAK-LOWY
March 2015
Simon Pulse
A heartfelt, humorous story of a teen boy’s impulsive road trip after the shock of his lifetime—told entirely in lists!
Darren hasn’t had an easy year.
There was his parents’ divorce, which just so happened to come at the same time his older brother Nate left for college and his longtime best friend moved away. And of course there’s the whole not having a girlfriend thing.

Then one Thursday morning Darren’s dad shows up at his house at 6 a.m. with a glazed chocolate doughnut and a revelation that turns Darren’s world inside out. In full freakout mode, Darren, in a totally un-Darren move, ditches school to go visit Nate. Barely twenty-four hours at Nate’s school makes everything much better or much worse—Darren has no idea. It might somehow be both. All he knows for sure is that in addition to trying to figure out why none of his family members are who they used to be, he’s now obsessed with a strangely amazing girl who showed up out of nowhere but then totally disappeared.
Told entirely in lists, Todd Hasak-Lowy’s debut YA novel perfectly captures why having anything to do with anyone, including yourself, is:
1. painful; 2. unavoidable; 3. ridiculously complicated; 4. possibly, hopefully the right thing after all.





















LOVED THIS BOOK.
SOMEONE SHOULD OPTION THE FILM RIGHTS
[book] A REUNION OF GHOSTS
A NOVEL
BY JUDITH CLAIRE MITCHELL
March 2015
Harper
The sins of the fathers are visited upon the children to the 3rd and 4th generations. That is the 67 letter tattoo on Delph Alter's calf. And so opens the story of three wickedly funny sisters. The inheritors of a unique family history on the Upper West Side of Manhattan, all living together on Riverside Drive. The novel is actually their suicide note that they are writing together, having determined that it is time to end their lives and the family lineage. It is cursed to their generation due to an invention by their great grandfather. Lady, Vee, and Delphine Alter knows that being Alters has not been easy. They keep a list on the back of a bedroom door of their ancestors, most of whom died early of suicide. Lady (Lily) is divorced, Vee (Veronica) a widow, and Delph just passed forty years of age. All named for flowers, but this garden is not thriving. It is 1999, the century in popular terms is ending.


















[book] Frank:
A Life in Politics from the Great
Society to Same-Sex Marriage
by Barney Frank
Former U.S. Congressman
March 2015
FS&G
How did a disheveled, intellectually combative gay Jew with a thick accent become one of the most effective (and funniest) politicians of our time?
Growing up in Bayonne, New Jersey, the fourteen-year-old Barney Frank made two vital discoveries about himself: he was attracted to government, and to men. He resolved to make a career out of the first attraction and to keep the second a secret. Now, fifty years later, his sexual orientation is widely accepted, while his belief in government is embattled.
Frank: A Life in Politics from the Great Society to Same-Sex Marriage is one man’s account of the country’s transformation—and the tale of a truly momentous career. Many Americans recall Frank’s lacerating wit, whether it was directed at the Clinton impeachment (“What did the president touch, and when did he touch it?”) or the pro-life movement (some people believe “life begins at conception and ends at birth”). But the contours of his private and public lives are less well-known. For more than four decades, he was at the center of the struggle for personal freedom and economic fairness. From the battle over AIDS funding in the 1980s to the debates over “big government” during the Clinton years to the 2008 financial crisis, the congressman from Massachusetts played a key role. In 2010, he coauthored the most far-reaching and controversial Wall Street reform bill since the era of the Great Depression, and helped bring about the repeal of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.
In this feisty and often moving memoir, Frank candidly discusses the satisfactions, fears, and grudges that come with elected office. He recalls the emotional toll of living in the closet and how his public crusade against homophobia conflicted with his private accommodation of it. He discusses his painful quarrels with allies; his friendships with public figures, from Tip O’Neill to Sonny Bono; and how he found love with his husband, Jim Ready, becoming the first sitting member of Congress to enter a same-sex marriage. He also demonstrates how he used his rhetorical skills to expose his opponents’ hypocrisies and delusions. Through it all, he expertly analyzes the gifts a successful politician must bring to the job, and how even Congress can be made to work.
Frank is the story of an extraordinary political life, an original argument for how to rebuild trust in government, and a guide to how political change really happens—composed by a master of the art.

















[book] THE BOOK OF WANDERINGS
A MOTHER DAUGHTER PILGRIMAGE
BY KIMBERLY MEYER
March 2015
Little Brown and Company
To a mother and daughter on an illuminating pilgrimage, this is what the desert said: Carry only what you need. Burn what can't be saved. Leave the remnants as an offering.

When Kimberly Meyer gave birth to her first daughter, Ellie, during her senior year of college, the bohemian life of exploration she had once imagined for herself was lost in the responsibilities of single motherhood. For years, both mother and daughter were haunted by how Ellie came into being-Kimberly through a restless ache for the world beyond, Ellie through a fear of abandonment.

Longing to bond with Ellie, now a college student, and longing, too, to rediscover herself, Kimberly sets off with her daughter on a quest for meaning across the globe. Leaving behind the rhythms of ordinary life in Houston, Texas, they dedicate a summer to retracing the footsteps of Felix Fabri, a medieval Dominican friar whose written account of his travels resonates with Kimberly. Their mother-daughter pilgrimage takes them to exotic destinations infused with mystery, spirituality, and rich history-from Venice to the Mediterranean through Greece and partitioned Cyprus, to Israel and across the Sinai Desert with Bedouin guides, to the Palestinian territories and to Cairo and Alexandria in Egypt.

In spare and gorgeous prose, The Book of Wanderings tells the story of Kimberly and Ellie's journey, and of the intimate, lasting bond they forge along the way. A meditation on stripping away the distractions, on simplicity, on how to live, this is a vibrant memoir with the power to both transport readers to far-off lands and to bring them in closer connection with themselves. It will appeal to anyone who has contemplated the road not taken, who has experienced the gnawing feeling that there is something more, who has faced the void-of offspring leaving, of mortality looming, of searching for someplace that feels, finally, like home.

















[book] Mark Rothko
Toward the Light in the Chapel
(Jewish Lives series)
by Annie Cohen-Solal
March 2015
Yale University Press
Mark Rothko, one of the greatest painters of the twentieth century, was born in the Jewish Pale of Settlement in 1903. He immigrated to the United States at age ten, taking with him his Talmudic education and his memories of pogroms and persecutions in Russia. His integration into American society began with a series of painful experiences, especially as a student at Yale, where he felt marginalized for his origins and ultimately left the school. The decision to become an artist led him to a new phase in his life. Early in his career, Annie Cohen-Solal writes, “he became a major player in the social struggle of American artists, and his own metamorphosis benefited from the unique transformation of the U.S. art world during this time.” Within a few decades, he had forged his definitive artistic signature, and most critics hailed him as a pioneer. The numerous museum shows that followed in major U.S. and European institutions ensured his celebrity. But this was not enough for Rothko, who continued to innovate. Ever faithful to his habit of confronting the establishment, he devoted the last decade of his life to cultivating his new conception of art as an experience, thanks to the commission of a radical project, the Rothko Chapel in Houston, Texas.
Cohen-Solal’s fascinating biography, based on considerable archival research, tells the unlikely story of how a young immigrant from Dvinsk became a crucial transforming agent of the art world—one whose legacy prevails to this day















HAYMARKET, a leading publisher of extreme Left viewpoints, will publish over half a dozen book on Israel in 2015. Here is one by Noam Chomsky. Nuf said.
[book] On Palestine
by Noam Chomsky and Ilan Pappé
Edited by Frank Barat
Haymarket Books
March 2015
Noam Chomsky is institute professor in the department of linguistics and philosophy at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Boston. He is one of the outspoken critics of Israel. Ilan Pappé is the Director of the European Center for Palestine Studies and a fellow at the Institute of Arab and Islamic Studies at the University of Exeter. He is the author of fifteen books including The Ethnic Cleansing of Palestine, and Gaza in Crisis: Reflections on the US-Israeli War Against the Palestinians. Frank Barat, the book's editor, heads the Russell Tribunal on Palestine which seeks peace, but also brands Israel as a criminal.

So... you can get a sense of the book, even before reading it. No?

The blurb: Operation Protective Edge, Israel's most recent assault on Gaza, left thousands of Palestinians dead and cleared the way for another Israeli land grab. The need to stand in solidarity with Palestinians has never been greater. Ilan Pappé and Noam Chomsky, two leading voices in the struggle to liberate Palestine, discuss the road ahead for Palestinians and how the international community can pressure Israel to end its human rights abuses against the people of Palestine. On Palestine is the sequel to their acclaimed book Gaza in Crisis (Haymarket Books).

















[book] TERMS OF SERVICE
SOCIAL MEDIA AND THE
PRICE OF CONSTANT CONNECTION
By Jacob Silverman
Harper
March 2015
A brilliant young literary and cultural critic joins the ranks of such stellar commentators as Evgeny Morozov and Nicholas Carr with this incisive commentary on social media culture and its impact on how we view ourselves, each other, and our world—an ambitious, perceptive, and illuminating manifesto that exposes the costs of our online connections.
Social networking is a staple of modern life, but its continued evolution is becoming increasingly detrimental to our lives. Shifts in communication, identity, and privacy are affecting us more than we realize or understand. Terms of Service crystalizes the current moment in technology and contemplates what is to come: the identity-validating pleasures and perils of online visibility; our newly adopted view of daily life through the lens of what’s share-worthy; and the surveillance state operated by social media platforms—Facebook, Google, Twitter, and more—to mine our personal data for advertising revenue: an invasion of our lives that is as pervasive as government spying.
Jacob Silverman calls for social media users to take back ownership of their digital lives from the Silicon Valley corporations who claim to know what’s best for them. Integrating politics, sociology, national security, pop culture, and technology, he explores the surprising conformity at the heart of Internet culture, explaining how social media companies engineer their products to encourage shallow engagement and discourage dissent, and reflects on the implications of the collapsed barriers between our private and public lives.
Illuminating the new era of social media as never before, Silverman brings into focus the inner conflict we feel when deciding what to share and what to “like,” and explains how we can take the steps we need to free ourselves.

















[book] LINCOLN AND THE JEWS
A HISTORY
BY Jonathan D. Sarna and Benjamin Shapell
March 2015
St. Martin's Press
One hundred and fifty years after Abraham Lincoln’s death, the full story of his extraordinary relationship with Jews is told here for the first time. Lincoln and the Jews: A History provides readers both with a captivating narrative of his interactions with Jews, and with the opportunity to immerse themselves in rare manuscripts and images, many from the Shapell Lincoln Collection, that show Lincoln in a way he has never been seen before.
Lincoln’s lifetime coincided with the emergence of Jews on the national scene in the United States. When he was born, in 1809, scarcely 3,000 Jews lived in the entire country. By the time of his assassination in 1865, large-scale immigration, principally from central Europe, had brought that number up to more than 150,000. Many Americans, including members of Lincoln’s cabinet and many of his top generals during the Civil War, were alarmed by this development and treated Jews as second-class citizens and religious outsiders. Lincoln, this book shows, exhibited precisely the opposite tendency. He also expressed a uniquely deep knowledge of the Old Testament, employing its language and concepts in some of his most important writings. He befriended Jews from a young age, promoted Jewish equality, appointed numerous Jews to public office, had Jewish advisers and supporters starting already from the early 1850s, as well as later during his two presidential campaigns, and in response to Jewish sensitivities, even changed the way he thought and spoke about America. Through his actions and his rhetoric—replacing “Christian nation,” for example, with “this nation under God”—he embraced Jews as insiders.
In this groundbreaking work, the product of meticulous research, historian Jonathan D. Sarna and collector Benjamin Shapell reveal how Lincoln’s remarkable relationship with American Jews impacted both his path to the presidency and his policy decisions as president. The volume uncovers a new and previously unknown feature of Abraham Lincoln’s life, one that broadened him, and, as a result, broadened America.


















[book] Prayers for the Living
A Novel
by fuse
March 2015
Fig Tree Books
Prayers for the Living is a novel both grandiose in its vision and loving in its familiarity. Presented in a series of conversations between grandmother Minnie Bloch and her companions, Alan Cheuse, National Public Radio commentator on All Things Considered, unfolds a layered family portrait of three generations of the Bloch family, whose members are collapsing under everyday burdens and brutal betrayals. Her son Manny is a renowned, almost legendary rabbi. Respected by his congregants and surrounded by family, no one suspects that he yearns for a life of greater personal glory, but when an oracular bird delivers what Manny believes to be a message from his deceased father, he abandons his congregation in pursuit of a life in business and his entire life spirals out of control.

As Manny’s fortunes rise in the corporate realm, he falls deeper into an affair with a congregant, a Holocaust survivor, his wife sinks deeper into alcoholism and depression and his daughter, traumatized by a sexual scandal at college, makes Manny the target of a plot to shatter his newly-found empire. The devoted family matriarch, Minnie, observes and recounts the tragic downfall of her family, unable to save them from themselves.

















[book] American Ghost:
A Family's Haunted Past in
the Desert Southwest Hardcover
By Hannah Nordhaus
March 10, 2015
Harper
The award-winning journalist and author of The Beekeeper’s Lament attempts to uncover the truth about her great-great-grandmother, Julia--whose ghost is said to haunt an elegant hotel in Santa Fe—in this spellbinding exploration of myth, family history, and the American West.
The dark-eyed woman in the long black gown was first seen in the 1970s, standing near a fireplace. She was sad and translucent, present and absent at once. Strange things began to happen in the Santa Fe hotel where she was seen. Gas fireplaces turned off and on without anyone touching a switch. Vases of flowers appeared in new locations. Glasses flew off shelves. And in one second-floor suite with a canopy bed and arched windows looking out to the mountains, guests reported alarming events: blankets ripped off while they slept, the room temperature plummeting, disembodied breathing, dancing balls of light.
La Posada—“place of rest”—had been a grand Santa Fe home before it was converted to a hotel. The room with the canopy bed had belonged to Julia Schuster Staab, the wife of the home’s original owner. She died in 1896, nearly a century before the hauntings were first reported. In American Ghost, Hannah Nordhaus traces the life, death, and unsettled afterlife of her great-great-grandmother Julia, from her childhood in Germany to her years in the American West with her Jewish merchant husband.
American Ghost is a story of pioneer women and immigrants, ghost hunters and psychics, frontier fortitude and mental illness, imagination and lore. As she traces the strands of Julia’s life, Nordhaus uncovers a larger tale of how a true-life story becomes a ghost story—and how difficult it can sometimes be to separate history and myth.

















[book] ALL WHO GO DO NOT RETURN
A MEMOIR
BY SHUKEM DEEN
March 2015
Graywolf
A moving and revealing exploration of ultra-Orthodox Judaism and one man's loss of faith Shulem Deen was raised to believe that questions are dangerous. As a member of the Skverers, one of the most insular Hasidic sects in the US, he knows little about the outside world—only that it is to be shunned. His marriage at eighteen is arranged and several children soon follow. Deen’s first transgression—turning on the radio—is small, but his curiosity leads him to the library, and later the Internet. Soon he begins a feverish inquiry into the tenets of his religious beliefs, until, several years later, his faith unravels entirely. Now a heretic, he fears being discovered and ostracized from the only world he knows. His relationship with his family at stake, he is forced into a life of deception, and begins a long struggle to hold on to those he loves most: his five children. In All Who Go Do Not Return, Deen bravely traces his harrowing loss of faith, while offering an illuminating look at a highly secretive world.

Shulem Deen is the author of "All Who Go Do Not Return," a memoir about growing up in and then leaving one of the most insular Hasidic sects in the U.S. Shulem is the former blogger known as "Hasidic Rebel," and the founding editor of Unpious, an online journal for voices on the Hasidic fringe. His work has appeared in Salon, The Brooklyn Rail, Tablet Magazine, The Jewish Daily Forward, and elsewhere. He serves as a board member at Footsteps, a New York City-based organization that offers assistance and support to those who have left the ultra-Orthodox Jewish community. He lives in Brooklyn, New York. Visit him at: www.shulemdeen.com.















[book] STRONG AS DEATH IS LOVE
The Song of Songs, Ruth, Esther,
Jonah, and Daniel, A Translation
with Commentary
by Robert Alter (Translator)
March 2015
Norton
An award-winning translation brings new immediacy to these beloved books of the Bible. Read them for the first time, again. These five late biblical books offer readers a range of pleasures not usually associated with the Bible. They are artful, entertaining literary works—innovative, even startling. Women often stand center stage. Song of Songs is a celebration of young love, frankly sensuous, with no reference to God or covenant. It offers some of the most beautiful love poems of the ancient world. The story of Queen Esther’s shrewd triumph is a secular entertainment that mixes farce with sly sexual comedy. The character of Ruth embodies the virtues of loyalty, love, and charity in a harmonious world. Enigma replaces harmony in Daniel, whose feverish night dreams envision the end of time. And the traditions of prophecy are recast in the tale of a fish that, on God’s command, swallows Jonah and imprisons him in its dark wet innards for three days. Alter’s translation restores the original power of these popular books

















[book] THE LAST FLIGHT OF POXL WEST
A NOVEL
BY DANIEL TORDAY
March 2015
St. Martin's Press
Poxl West fled the Nazis’ onslaught in Czechoslovakia. He escaped their clutches again in Holland. He pulled Londoners from the Blitz’s rubble. He wooed intoxicating, unconventional beauties. He rained fire on Germany from his RAF bomber.
Poxl West is the epitome of manhood and something of an idol to his teenage nephew, Eli Goldstein, who reveres him as a brave, singular, Jewish war hero. Poxl fills Eli’s head with electric accounts of his derring-do, adventures and romances, as he collects the best episodes from his storied life into a memoir.
He publishes that memoir, Skylock, to great acclaim, and its success takes him on the road, and out of Eli’s life. With his uncle gone, Eli throws himself into reading his opus and becomes fixated on all things Poxl.
But as he delves deeper into Poxl’s history, Eli begins to see that the life of the fearless superman he’s adored has been much darker than he let on, and filled with unimaginable loss from which he may have not recovered. As the truth about Poxl emerges, it forces Eli to face irreconcilable facts about the war he’s romanticized and the vision of the man he's held so dear.
The Last Flight of Poxl West beautifully weaves together the two unforgettable voices of Eli Goldstein and Poxl West, exploring what it really means to be a hero, and to be a family, in the long shadow of war.

















[book] PRAYERS FOR THE LIVING
A NOVEL
BY ALAN CHEUSE
March 2015
Fig Tree Books
Foreword by Tova Mirvis
Prayers for the Living is a novel both grandiose in its vision and loving in its familiarity. Presented in a series of conversations between grandmother Minnie Bloch and her companions, Alan Cheuse, National Public Radio commentator on All Things Considered, unfolds a layered family portrait of three generations of the Bloch family, whose members are collapsing under everyday burdens and brutal betrayals. Her son Manny is a renowned, almost legendary rabbi. Respected by his congregants and surrounded by family, no one suspects that he yearns for a life of greater personal glory, but when an oracular bird delivers what Manny believes to be a message from his deceased father, he abandons his congregation in pursuit of a life in business and his entire life spirals out of control.
As Manny’s fortunes rise in the corporate realm, he falls deeper into an affair with a congregant, a Holocaust survivor, his wife sinks deeper into alcoholism and depression and his daughter, traumatized by a sexual scandal at college, makes Manny the target of a plot to shatter his newly-found empire. The devoted family matriarch, Minnie, observes and recounts the tragic downfall of her family, unable to save them from themselves.


















[book] THE COVENANT KITCHEN
FOOD AND WINE FOR
THE NEW JEWISH TABLE
By Jeff and Jodie Morgan
Covenant Winery
March 2015
Schocken Books – OU Press
A kosher cookbook
From Hummus with Toppings and Pita Bread to Cauliflower Soup with Crispy Garlic and Curry Oil, Gefilte Quenelles with Braised Leeks, Gnocchi with Sage Butter, Spiced Lamb Tagine with Currants and Israeli Couscous, and Chile Chocolate Soufflé, here are more than 100 recipes complete with suggested wine pairings, from the veteran cookbook authors and owners of the acclaimed Covenant Winery in California.

Filled with the flavors of Italy, Provence, North Africa, Asia, California, and Israel, these original, easy-to-prepare recipes for appetizers, salads, soups, side dishes, main courses, and desserts take kosher dining to a new, upscale level. With more than two decades of professional food-writing and wine-making experience, Jeff and Jodie Morgan share their favorite recipes and—in a first for a kosher cookbook — detailed suggested wine pairings, to give us a cookbook that respects Jewish customs (they are new to kashrut), gives traditional food creative culinary makeovers, and introduces flavorful new dishes that will quickly become family favorites.

The Morgans once lived in Nice, France, where an onion tart called a pissaladière is popular. In the book, they have a recipe for their version of the tart; it is filled with caramelized onions (6 of them) seasoned in garlic and thyme, and olives are placed on top.

The Covenant Kitchen includes informative sidebars on how to select the right wine for any occasion, on the requirements for kosher food preparation, and on how to prepare the basics (chicken stock, vegetable stock, mayonnaise, pesto sauce). Also included are sample menus for Jewish holidays throughout the year—from Braised Beef Short Ribs with Root Vegetables and Garlic Confit (confetti) Mashed Potatoes for the Passover Seder to Latkes with Sour Cream, Green Onions, and Masago for Chanukah to Mocha Cheesecake for Shavuot—and the fascinating story of wine production and consumption in ancient Israel and throughout Jewish history.

With more than 75 beautiful, full-color food and wine-country photographs, The Covenant Kitchen puts a fresh spin on one of the world's oldest culinary traditions. It will be a delicious addition to any kitchen bookshelf.

Jodie and Jeff Morgan co-own Covenant Winery. Jeff taught at CIA – Culinary Institute of America and wrote for Wine Spectator. They reside near Berkeley. Jeff and Jodie Morgan have collaborated on seven previous cookbooks. Yeas ago, Jeff teamed up with Leslie Rudd (owner of Dean & DeLuca) to make a kosher wine in California, and with the help of the Baron Herzog team, released a 2003 vintage in 2005.









[book] THE COMMUNITY TABLE
Recipes and Stories
from the JCC in Manhattan and Beyond
March 2015
Grand Central L&S
Across the continent, JCCs are cultural epicenters of modern Jewish life. The buildings are hives of activity; at any given moment, hundreds of people of all ages, backgrounds, interests, and opinions gather to engage in a myriad of activities. And nothing says community more than food.
While sitting down to enjoy a meal together is undeniably bonding, working together to prepare it is even more so. Now, three chefs who are longstanding members of the JCC Manhattan share classic recipes such as Weekly Challah, Latkes Four Ways, and Pumpkin Rugelach, plus an inspiring selection of contemporary dishes with a farm-to-table emphasis and international flavors: Fig and Fennel Bread, Iraqi Lamb Burgers, Brussels Sprouts with Pomegranate and Citrus Glaze, and much more. Holiday menu suggestions and a complete chart grouping recipes by dietary restriction (meat, pareve, dairy) are included as well.
With anecdotal contributions from JCCs all around the country, this cookbook highlights the JCC's vibrant, eclectic community-and celebrates all of its many flavors











[book] THE MYTH OF THE CULTURAL JEW
Culture and Law in Jewish Tradition
March 2015
Oxford University Press
A myth exists that Jews can embrace the cultural components of Judaism without appreciating the legal aspects of the Jewish tradition. This myth suggests that law and culture are independent of one another. In reality, however, much of Jewish culture has a basis in Jewish law. Similarly, Jewish law produces Jewish culture. A cultural analysis paradigm provides a useful way of understanding the Jewish tradition as the product of both legal precepts and cultural elements. This paradigm sees law and culture as inextricably intertwined and historically specific. This perspective also emphasizes the human element of law's composition and the role of existing power dynamics in shaping Jewish law.

In light of this inevitable intersection between culture and law, The Myth of the Cultural Jew: Culture and Law in Jewish Tradition argues that Jewish culture is shallow unless it is grounded in Jewish law. Roberta Rosenthal Kwall develops and applies a cultural analysis paradigm to the Jewish tradition that departs from the understanding of Jewish law solely as the embodiment of Divine command. Her paradigm explains why both law and culture must matter to those interested in forging meaningful Jewish identity and transmitting the tradition.


















[book] WHERE THE BIRD SINGS BEST
BY ALEJANDRO JODOROWSKY
Translated by Alfred MacAdam
March 2015
Restless
The magnum opus from Alejandro Jodorowsky—director of The Holy Mountain, star of Jodorowsky’s Dune, spiritual guru behind Psychomagic and The Way of Tarot, innovator behind classic comics The Incal and Metabarons, and legend of Latin American literature.
There has never been an artist like the polymathic Chilean director, author, and mystic Alejandro Jodorowsky. For eight decades, he has blazed new trails across a dazzling variety of creative fields. While his psychedelic, visionary films have been celebrated by the likes of John Lennon, Marina Abramovic, and Kanye West, his novels—praised throughout Latin America in the same breath as those of Gabriel García Márquez—have remained largely unknown in the English-speaking world. Until now.
Where the Bird Sings Best tells the fantastic story of the Jodorowskys’ emigration from Ukraine to Chile amidst the political and cultural upheavals of the 19th and 20th centuries. Like One Hundred Years of Solitude, Jodorowsky’s book transforms family history into heroic legend: incestuous beekeepers hide their crime with a living cloak of bees, a czar fakes his own death to live as a hermit amongst the animals, a devout grandfather confides only in the ghost of a wise rabbi, a transgender ballerina with a voracious sexual appetite holds a would-be saint in thrall. Kaleidoscopic, exhilarating, and erotic, Where the Bird Sings Best expands the classic immigration story to mythic proportions.











[book] All Who Go Do Not Return
A Memoir
(of a former Skverer Hasid
by Shulem Deen
March 24, 2015
Graywolf
A moving and revealing exploration of ultra-Orthodox Judaism and one man's loss of faith
The book open in New Square, a village of Skverer Hasidim near New York City. Shulem is sitting at dinner with his wife and children when the phone rings. In a monotone voice, a Hasidic community leader invites him to a meeting and tells him to bring a friend. The bet din leaders need to speak with him about being an apostate, a heretic, a non-believer. Are the rumors true?

Shulem Deen was raised to believe that questions are dangerous. As a member of the Skverers, one of the most insular Hasidic sects in the US, he knows little about the outside world—only that it is to be shunned.
His marriage at eighteen is arranged and several children soon follow. Deen’s first transgression — turning on the radio — is small, but his curiosity leads him to the library, and later the Internet.
Soon he begins a feverish inquiry into the tenets of his religious beliefs, until, several years later, his faith unravels entirely. Now a heretic, he fears being discovered and ostracized from the only world he knows. His relationship with his family at stake, he is forced into a life of deception, and begins a long struggle to hold on to those he loves most: his five children.
In All Who Go Do Not Return, Deen bravely traces his harrowing loss of faith, while offering an illuminating look at a highly secretive world.

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[book] Do the KIND Thing:
Think Boundlessly,
Work Purposefully,
Live Passionately
by Daniel Lubetzky
March 31, 2015
Ballantine
Daniel Lubetzky is a social entrepreneur. He is the CEO and founder of KIND Healthy Snacks (and its associated KIND Movement). He was a founder of PeaceWorks and OneVoice, and cofounder of the apparel company Maiyet. Bloomberg BW named one of America’s Most Promising Social Entrepreneurs. He received an Entrepreneur of the Year award from both Entrepreneur magazine and Ernst & Young.

When Daniel Lubetzky started KIND Healthy Snacks in 2004, he aimed to defy the conventional wisdom that healthy snack bars are not tasty. His bars were marketed as both. KIND become the fastest-growing purveyor of healthy snacks. And the KIND Movement — the company’s social mission to make the world a little kinder — has sparked more than a million good deeds.

In Do the KIND Thing, Lubetzky shares the revolutionary principles that have shaped KIND’s business model and led to its success, while offering an unfiltered and intensely personal look into the mind of a pioneering social entrepreneur. Inspired by his father, who survived the Holocaust thanks to the courageous kindness of strangers, Lubetzky began his career handselling a sun-dried tomato spread made collaboratively by Arabs and Jews in Israel. Despite early setbacks, he never lost his faith in his vision of a “not-only-for-profit” business—one that sold great products and helped to make the world a better place.

While other companies let circumstances force them into choosing between two seemingly incompatible options, people at KIND say “AND.” At its core, this idea is about challenging assumptions and false compromises. It is about not settling for less and being willing to take greater risks, often financial. It is about learning to think boundlessly and critically, and choosing what at first may be the tougher path for later, greater rewards. By using illuminating anecdotes from his own career, and celebrating some past failures through the lessons learned from them, Lubetzky outlines his core tenets for building a successful business and a thriving social enterprise. He explores the value of staying true to your brand, highlights the importance of transparency and communication in the workplace, and explains why good intentions alone won’t sell products.
Engaging and inspirational, Do the KIND Thing shows how the power of AND worked wonders for one company—and could empower the next generation of social entrepreneurs to improve their bottom line and change the world.

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11,500 applications are received by Google each day
Each application is seen by a human
That is 2 million a year
Should I tell you how I failed the phone screen in 2003?
[book] WORK RULES !
Insights from Inside Google
That Will Transform How
You Live and Lead
by Laszlo Bock (Pomona, Yale SOM)
March 35, 2015
Twelve (Hachette)
Laszlo escaped as a child with his ethnic Hungarian family from Romania and was granted asylum in the United States. The lived in a refugee camp for some time, but he does not recall it. A graduate of Pomona and Yale School of Management, he worked for Hewitt and McKinsey and served in analyst, compensation, and HR roles at General Electric and now, Google. He even did some postgrad small acting roles in minor productions (but nothing porn or inappropriate). He supports changes to U.S. Immigration laws and testified before Congress in his Google capacity in 2014.

Bock is a cheerleader for HR careers. There have been dramatic changes in the nature of labor markets in the past 2 decades and few companies have been as thoughtful on the topic of how to best instill a balance of autonomy, collaboration, and innovation among their people, or staff.

"We spend more time working than doing anything else in life. It's not right that the experience of work should be so demotivating and dehumanizing." So says Laszlo Bock, head of People Operations at the company that transformed how the world interacts with knowledge. This insight is the heart of WORK RULES!, a compelling and surprisingly playful manifesto with the potential to change how we work and live.
Drawing on the latest research in behavioral economics and with a profound grasp of human psychology, Bock also provides teaching examples from a range of industries--including companies that are household names but hideous places to work, and little-known companies that achieve spectacular results by valuing and listening to their employees. Bock takes us inside one of history's most explosively successful businesses to reveal why Google is consistently rated one of the best places to work in the world, distilling 15 years of intensive worker R&D into delightfully counterintuitive principles that are easy to put into action, whether you're a team of one or a team of thousands.
Some lessons from WORK RULES! include:
Take away managers' power over employees
Learn from your best employees--and your worst
Only hire people who are smarter than you are, no matter how long it takes to find them
Pay unfairly (it's more fair!)
Don't trust your gut: use data to predict and shape the future
Default to open: be transparent, and welcome feedback
If you're comfortable with the amount of freedom you've given your employees, you haven't gone far enough

WORK RULES! shows how to strike a balance between creativity and structure, leading to success you can measure in quality of life as well as market share. Read it to build a better company from within rather than from above; read it to reawaken your joy in what you do.

Laszlo in The New York Times:



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[book] RAVENSBRUCK
Life and Death in Hitler's
Concentration Camp for Women
by Sarah Helm
March 2015
Nan A Talese imprint
A masterly and moving account of the most horrific hidden atrocity of World War II: Ravensbrück, the only Nazi concentration camp built for women
On a sunny morning in May 1939 a phalanx of 867 women—housewives, doctors, opera singers, politicians, prostitutes—was marched through the woods fifty miles north of Berlin, driven on past a shining lake, then herded in through giant gates. Whipping and kicking them were scores of German women guards. Their destination was Ravensbrück, a concentration camp designed specifically for women by Heinrich Himmler, prime architect of the Holocaust. By the end of the war 130,000 women from more than twenty different European countries had been imprisoned there; among the prominent names were Geneviève de Gaulle, General de Gaulle’s niece, and Gemma La Guardia Gluck, sister of the wartime mayor of New York.
Only a small number of these women were Jewish; Ravensbrück was largely a place for the Nazis to eliminate other inferior beings—social outcasts, Gypsies, political enemies, foreign resisters, the sick, the disabled, and the “mad.” Over six years the prisoners endured beatings, torture, slave labor, starvation, and random execution. In the final months of the war, Ravensbrück became an extermination camp. Estimates of the final death toll by April 1945 have ranged from 30,000 to 90,000.
For decades the story of Ravensbrück was hidden behind the Iron Curtain, and today it is still little known. Using testimony unearthed since the end of the Cold War and interviews with survivors who have never talked before, Sarah Helm has ventured into the heart of the camp, demonstrating for the reader in riveting detail how easily and quickly the unthinkable horror evolved.
Far more than a catalog of atrocities, however, Ravensbrück is also a compelling account of what one survivor called “the heroism, superhuman tenacity, and exceptional willpower to survive.” For every prisoner whose strength failed, another found the will to resist through acts of self-sacrifice and friendship, as well as sabotage, protest, and escape.
While the core of this book is told from inside the camp, the story also sheds new light on the evolution of the wider genocide, the impotence of the world to respond, and Himmler’s final attempt to seek a separate peace with the Allies using the women of Ravensbrück as a bargaining chip. Chilling, inspiring, and deeply unsettling, Ravensbrück is a groundbreaking work of historical investigation. With rare clarity, it reminds us of the capacity of humankind both for bestial cruelty and for courage against all odds.

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[book] JEWS Vs. ZOMBIES
Edited by Rebecca Levene and Lavie Tidhar
March 2015
Kindle version
Jurassic London
In JEWS VS ZOMBIES, editors Lavie Tidhar and Rebecca Levene have gathered together brand new stories from the light-hearted to the profound, with authors ranging from BSFA Award winner Adam Roberts to best-selling author Sarah Lotz, all asking, for the first time, the question you didn’t even know you wanted answered – what happens when the Chosen People meet the Living Dead?
“If you will it, it is no dream!” as Theodor Herzl said: and no doubt he had just such an anthology in mind. With all proceeds going to charity, JEWS VS ZOMBIES and its companion volume, JEWS VS ALIENS, are the must have anthologies of the year.
Authors include: Rena Rossner (Author), Ofir Touche Gafla (Author), Shimon Adaf (Author), Daniel Polansky (Author), Sarah Lotz (Author), Benjamin Rosenbaum (Author), Anna Tambour (Author), and Adam Roberts (Author)
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[book] JEWS Vs. ALIENSS
Edited by Rebecca Levene and Lavie Tidhar
March 2015
Kindle version
Jurassic London
In JEWS VS ALIENS, editors Lavie Tidhar and Rebecca Levene have gathered together brand new stories from the light-hearted to the profound, with authors ranging from Orange Prize winner Naomi Alderman to Big Bang Theory writer/producer Eric Kaplan, all asking, for the first time, the question you didn’t even know you wanted answered – what happens when the aliens arrive, only to encounter... Jews?

Authors include Naomi Alderman (Author), Rosanne Rabinowitz (Author), Eric Kaplan (Author), Rachel Swirsky (Author), Elana Gomel (Author), Lois H. Gresh (Author), Gon Ben Ari (Author) “If you will it, it is no dream!” as Theodor Herzl said: and no doubt he had just such an anthology in mind. With all proceeds going to charity, JEWS VS ALIENS and its companion volume, JEWS VS ZOMBIES, are the must have anthologies of the year Click the book cover or title to read more or to purchase the book at discount.










[book] Jewish Wisdom For Growing Older:
Finding Your Grit and Grace Beyond Midlife
by Rabbi Dayle A. Friedman
March 2015
Jewish Lights
Perspective, inspiration and direction for living fully and well as you age.
Whether you are fifty-five or seventy-five, growing older brings you into uncharted terrain. Unprecedented longevity brings remarkable opportunities but also wrenching difficulties. With any luck, you will have ample time to reinvent yourself, finish unfinished business and have adventures. But you will also inevitably face loss, change and limits. Our contemporary culture is filled with the dread of aging and so offers us few clues to living fully and well as we age. How will you find your way to grow, make meaning and flourish amid such daunting challenges?
Rabbi Dayle A. Friedman, a pioneer in reinventing and revaluing aging, mines ancient Jewish wisdom for values, tools and precedents to frame your new callings and beginnings, shifting family roles, and your experiences of illness and death. She shows that Jewish tradition has for millennia approached aging with a healthy combination of reverence and realism. Its practices, narratives and norms offer inspiration and guidance to help seekers of all faiths find radiance and resilience as they grow older.

Rabbi Dayle A. Friedman is a spiritual guide, scholar, and social innovator. She has pioneered a Jewish spiritual response to the challenges and blessings of later life. She offers spiritual direction, training and consultation through Growing Older, her Philadelphia based, national practice, www.growingolder.co. She serves as a spiritual director at Hebrew Union College in NYC. She is the author of Jewish Wisdom for Growing Older: FInding Your Grit and Grace Beyond Midlife (Jewish Lights, 2015), editor of Jewish Pastoral Care and author of Jewish Visions for Aging (both Jewish Lights).  She founded and directed Hiddur: The Center for Aging and Judaism of the Reconstructionist Rabbinical College
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[book] ETHICAL WILLS AND
HOW TO PREPARE THEM
A GUIDE TO SHARING YOUR VALUES
FROM GENERATION TO GENERATION
by Rabbi Jack Riemer (Author) and Dr. Nathaniel Stampfer
Foreword by Rabbi Harold S. Kushner
2015
Jewish Lights
Leave loved ones a legacy of blessings, wisdom, gratitude and hope.
Ethical wills are precious spiritual documents, windows into the souls of those who write them. These "legacy letters" sum up what the writers have learned in life, and what they want most for, and from, their loved ones. An ethical will is often a treasured part of a family's history.
In this unique combination of “what is” and “how to”—an updated edition of So That Your Values Live On (Jewish Lights)—the reader can see examples of ethical wills written by almost one hundred famous and ordinary Jewish people, which serve as inspiration and guides, and a step-by-step process that shows the reader how to prepare an ethical will. The wide range of contemporary ethical wills in the book reveals the ongoing relevance of ethical wills for people of all faiths, all backgrounds. The emotional power of these last letters will inspire people to live more fully now, and to record their own blessings for the generations to come.
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[book] After Woodstock
by Elliot Tiber
Foreword by Ang Lee
March 31, 2015
Square One
Wow. Such a life that he has three memoirs
During the summer of 1969, Elliot Tiber helped start the gay liberation movement and saved the Woodstock Festival from cancellation. But some of the best and most significant events of his life happened After Woodstock.
In this third volume of his memoirs, following Palm Trees on the Hudson and Taking Woodstock, Tiber chronicles his madcap, and often heartbreaking adventures in the entertainment industry.
Guided as much by chutzpah as by his creative drive, Tiber travels around the world, always looking to grab the brass ring. And everywhere he goes, from Hollywood to Brussels, Tiber makes his indelible, irreverent, unique mark.
Along the way, Tiber meets the celebrated Belgian playwright and director André Ernotte. Over the course of his decades-long relationship with Ernotte, Tiber realizes his potential as a humorist and writer, and finds a way to cope with his difficult mother, whose second wedding in the hills of Israel gives new meaning to the Wailing Wall. The relationship is tested by the AIDS crisis and a string of professional disappointments, but ultimately endures the test of time. With Ernotte, Tiber finally learns the true meaning of love. A passionate and joyful evocation of a very different time, After Woodstock reminds us how the search for love and meaning drives us forward.
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[book] MOODY BITCHES
The Truth About the Drugs You're Taking,
The Sleep You're Missing,
The Sex You're Not Having, and
What's Really Making You Crazy by Dr. Julie Holland, MD
March 3, 2015
Graywolf
Penguin

Dr. Holland is a Penn grad where she majored in BBB. So you know this book will be good. (plus she went to Temple Med). Ask her about malingering, MDMA/Ecstacy, PET scans and more. She is fascinating. You prolly recall her 2009 book, Weekends at Bellevue: Nine Years on the Night Shift at the Psych ER

This is a groundbreaking guide for women of all ages that shows women’s inherent moodiness is a strength, not a weakness. Some say it is a milestone book and is the new Our Bodies Our Selves.

As women, we learn from an early age that our moods are a problem. Bitches are moody. To succeed in life, we are told, we must have it all under control. We have to tamp down our inherent shifts in favor of a more static way of being. But our bodies are wiser than we imagine. Moods are not an annoyance to be stuffed away. They are a finely-tuned feedback system that, if heeded, can tell us how best to manage our lives. Our changing moods let us know when our bodies are primed to tackle different challenges and when we should be alert to developing problems. They help us select the right tool for each of our many jobs. If we deny our emotionality, we deny the breadth of our talents. With the right care of our inherently dynamic bodies, we can master our moods to avail ourselves of this great natural strength.

Yet millions of American women are medicating away their emotions because our culture says that moodiness is a problem to be fixed. One in four of us takes a psychiatric drug. If you add sleeping pills to the mix, the statistics become considerably higher. Over-prescribed medications can have devastating consequences for women in many areas of our lives: sex, relationships, sleep, eating, focus, balance, and aging. And even if we don’t pop a pill, women everywhere are numbing their emotions with food, alcohol, and a host of addictive behaviors that deny the wisdom of our bodies and keep us from addressing the real issues that we face.

Dr. Julie Holland knows there is a better way. She’s been sharing her frank and funny wisdom with her patients for years, and in Moody Bitches Dr. Holland offers readers a guide to our bodies and our moodiness that includes insider information about the pros and cons of the drugs we’re being offered, the direct link between food and mood, an honest discussion about sex, practical exercise and sleep strategies, as well as some surprising and highly effective natural therapies that can help us press the reset button on our own bodies and minds.

In the tradition of Our Bodies, Our Selves, this groundbreaking guide for women of all ages will forge a much needed new path in women’s health—and offer women invaluable information on how to live better, and be more balanced, at every stage of life.
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[book] Anne Frank and the Remembering Tree
by Sandy Eisenberg Sasso
Illustrated by Erika Steiskal
March 2015
Skiner House
Chidren’s Museum of Indianapolis
Ages 6 – 9

In most windows I saw people working and children playing. When the soldiers came, people began covering their windows, so I couldn't see inside anymore. But the tiny attic window of the narrow brick house behind Otto Frank's business offices had no shade. For a long time the rooms were empty. Then one day, Otto's whole family came to live there. They called their new home the Secret Annex...
A story of Anne Frank, who loved a tree and the tree who promised never to forget her.
This book is co-published with the Children's Museum of Indianapolis, chosen by the Anne Frank Center as the first U.S. recipient of a sapling from the tree outside of the Secret Annex window (the tree is the narrator in the book).
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[book] SHRINKS
The Untold Story of Psychiatry
by Jeffrey A. Lieberman
with Ogi Ogas
March 10, 2015
Little, Brown and Company
he fascinating story of psychiatry's origins, demise, and redemption, by the former President of the American Psychiatric Association.
Psychiatry has come a long way since the days of chaining "lunatics" in cold cells and parading them as freakish marvels before a gaping public. But, as Jeffrey Lieberman, MD, reveals in his extraordinary and eye-opening book, the path to legitimacy for "the black sheep of medicine" has been anything but smooth.
In Shrinks, Dr. Lieberman traces the field from its birth as a mystic pseudo-science through its adolescence as a cult of "shrinks" to its late blooming maturity -- beginning after World War II -- as a science-driven profession that saves lives. With fascinating case studies and portraits of the luminaries of the field - from Sigmund Freud to Eric Kandel -- Shrinks is a gripping and illuminating read, and an urgent call-to- arms to dispel the stigma of mental illnesses by treating them as diseases rather than unfortunate states of mind.
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[book] HEAVEN'S BANKERS
Inside the Hidden World
of Islamic Finance
by Harris Irfan
March 2015
Overlook
The groundbreaking and globetrotting exploration of the Islamic finance industry, by one of its leading practitioners.
A trillion dollar financial industry is revolutionizing the global economy. Governments and corporations across the Islamic world are increasingly turning to finance that complies with Shari‘a law in order to fund economic growth. Even in the West, Islamic finance is rapidly becoming an important alternative source of funding at a time when the conventional finance industry is reeling from the effects of the financial crisis.
From its origins in the seventh century, Islamic finance has sought to develop core ethical principles that are based in the foundations of Islam and Shari‘a. By engaging critically with the complexities of international finance, it has evolved and adapted into a world emerging from the economic and moral aftermath of a global financial crisis. But with an increasing Western interest, is it able to remain true to the principles of its faith? Can it maintain its ideals of social justice? Or is Islamic finance guilty of the very dangers it seeks to avoid?
In Heaven’s Bankers, Harris Irfan, one of the world’s leading Islamic finance bankers, gives unparalleled insight into the heart of this secretive industry. From his personal experience of working with leading bankers, scholars and lawyers, he debunks the myths of Islamic banking, analyzes its greatest deals and looks to the future of a system that has reprioritized the very nature of money itself.
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Watch for the following Israeli authors to get translation deals
Dalia Betolin Sherman, When The World Became White
Eldad Beck, Germany Otherwise
Moshe Cohen-Gil, The Israelis Who Wished to Cure The World
Eyal Dotan, Flesh
Jonathan Kivity, The Ashtray Effect





[book] THE NAZI OFFICER'S WIFE
HOW ONE JEWISH WOMAN SURVIVED THE HOLOCAUST
BY EDITH HAHN BEER
WITH SUSAN DWORKIN
April 2015
Morrow
updated paperback version with new chapter
Edith Hahn was an outspoken young woman in Vienna when the Gestapo forced her into a ghetto and then into a slave labor camp. When she returned home months later, she knew she would become a hunted woman and went underground. With the help of a Christian friend, she emerged in Munich as Grete Denner. There she met Werner Vetter, a Nazi Party member who fell in love with her. Despite Edith's protests and even her eventual confession that she was Jewish, he married her and kept her identity a secret.
In wrenching detail, Edith recalls a life of constant, almost paralyzing fear. She tells how German officials casually questioned the lineage of her parents; how during childbirth she refused all painkillers, afraid that in an altered state of mind she might reveal something of her past; and how, after her husband was captured by the Soviets, she was bombed out of her house and had to hide while drunken Russian soldiers raped women on the street.
Despite the risk it posed to her life, Edith created a remarkable record of survival. She saved every document, as well as photographs she took inside labor camps. Now part of the permanent collection at the Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington, D.C., these hundreds of documents, several of which are included in this volume, form the fabric of a gripping new chapter in the history of the Holocaust—complex, troubling, and ultimately triumphant.

















[book] THE JPS BIBLE COMMENTARY
SONG OF SONGS
SHIR HASHIRIM
The Traditional Hebrew Text with
the New JPS Translation
Commentary by Michael Fishbane (Univ of Chicago)
March 2015
Jewish Publication Society / Nebraska
Song of Songs is a wondrous collection of love lyrics nestled in the heart of the Hebrew Bible songs of passion and praise between a young maiden and her beloved. It is religious lyric par excellence. But what is its true meaning?
Is it an expression of human love and passion, pure and simple?
A celebration of the covenant between God and Israel?
Or something else?
The latest volume in the Jewish Publication Society s highly acclaimed Bible Commentary series, Song of Songs provides a line-by-line commentary of the original Hebrew Bible text, complete with vocalization and cantillation marks, alongside the JPS English translation. Unique to this volume are four layers of commentary: the traditional PaRDeS of peshat (literal meaning), derash (midrashic and religious-traditional sense), remez (allegorical level), and sod (mystical and spiritual intimations).
Michael Fishbane skillfully draws from them all to reveal the extraordinary range of interpretations and ideas perceived in this beloved biblical book. A comprehensive introduction, extensive endnotes, a full bibliography (traditional and modern), and additional explanatory materials are included to enhance the reader s appreciation of the work.
This original, comprehensive commentary on the Song of Songs interprets historical, critical, and traditional sources drawn from the ancient Near East, the entire spectrum of Jewish sources and commentaries, and modern critical studies


















[book] The Commentators' Bible:
Deuteronomy:
The Rubin JPS Miqra’ot Gedolot
Edited by Michael Carasik
(University of Pennsylvania, Torah Talk Podcast)
2015
Jewish Publication Society / Nebraska
First published five hundred years ago as the “Rabbinic Bible,” the biblical commentaries known as Miqra’ot Gedolot have inspired and educated generations of Hebrew readers. With this fourth volume of the acclaimed English edition, the voices of Rashi, Ibn Ezra, Nachmanides, Rashbam, and other medieval Bible commentators come alive once more, speaking in a contemporary English translation annotated and explicated for lay readers.
Each page of this volume contains several verses from the book of Deuteronomy, surrounded by both the 1917 and the 1985 JPS translations and by new contemporary English translations of the major commentators. This edition also includes introductory material, a glossary of terms, a list of names used in the text, notes on source texts, essays on special topics, and resources for further study.


















[book] GENES AND JEWS
The Genetic Future in
Contemporary Jewish Thought
Edited by Rabbi Elliot N. Dorff (AJU-LA)
and Laurie Zoloth (Weinberg College)
Foreword by Mark S. Frankel (AAAS)
2015
Jewish Publication Society / Nebraska
Well aware of Jews having once been the victims of Nazi eugenics policies, many Jews today have an ambivalent attitude toward new genetics and are understandably wary of genetic forms of identity and intervention. At the same time, the Jewish tradition is strongly committed to medical research designed to prevent or cure diseases. Jews and Genes explores this tension against the backdrop of various important developments in genetics and bioethics—new advances in stem cell research; genetic mapping, identity, testing, and intervention; and the role of religion and ethics in shaping public policy.
Jews and Genes brings together leaders in their fields, from all walks of Judaism, to explore these most timely and intriguing topics—the intricacies of the genetic code and the wonders of life, along with cutting-edge science and the ethical issues it raises.
















APRIL 2015 BOOKS




What if you found out that you grandfather was a heinous mass murdering Nazi
[book] MY GRANDFATHER WOULD HAVE SHOT ME
A Black Woman Discovers Her
Family's Nazi Past
by Jennifer Teege
with Nikola Sellmair
Translated by Carolin Sommer
April 15, 2015
Experiment
An international bestseller—the extraordinary memoir of a German-Nigerian woman who learns that her grandfather was the brutal Nazi commandant depicted in Schindler’s List
“I have entered a chamber of horrors. . . . Slowly I begin to grasp that the Amon Goeth in the film Schindler’s List is not a fictional character, but a person who actually existed in flesh and blood. A man who killed people by the dozens and, what is more, who enjoyed it. My grandfather. I am the granddaughter of a mass murderer.”
When Jennifer Teege happened to pluck a library book off its shelf, she couldn’t have known that her life, from that moment, would be irrevocably altered. What would you do if you suddenly discovered that your grandfather was responsible for thousands of brutal murders? This is the reality Teege—who was raised by nuns and then a foster family—faced when she learned that her biological grandfather was the real-life villain immortalized in Schindler’s List: Amon Goeth, the vicious Nazi commandant of Plaszów concentration camp. The more Teege read about Goeth, the more certain she became: If her grandfather had met her—a black woman—he would have shot her.
Teege’s discovery sends her, at age 38, into the severest depression of her life—and on a quest to fully understand her family’s haunted history. Her research takes her to Krakow, where her grandfather “cleared” the Jewish ghetto in 1943; to nearby Plaszów, the concentration camp he oversaw; and even back to Israel, where she herself attended college and learned fluent Hebrew. Teege struggles to reconnect with her estranged mother Monika, and to accept that her grandmother Ruth Irene—a beloved figure from her earliest memories—once lived in luxury at Plaszów, side by side with Amon Goeth.
Teege’s story is cowritten by award-winning journalist Nikola Sellmair, who also provides fascinating additional context (in part drawn from original interviews with Teege’s family and friends) in a second, interwoven narrative. Ultimately, Teege’s resolute search for the truth of her family’s history leads her, step by step, to the possibility of her own liberation.


















[book] Jerusalem Interrupted
Modernity and Colonial
Transformation 1917-present
by Lena Jayyusi
April 2015
paperback
Oliver Tree
Lena Jayyusi is a professor in the College of Communication and Media Sciences on the Dubai campus of Zayed University… so obviously she is a big Zionist…

Most histories of 20th-century Jerusalem published in English focus on the city's Jewish life and neighborhoods; this book does not. If focuses on non-Jews. Some say this balances the history, but to say that there is a balance, means that one’s methodlogy must be to segment the perspective by Jewish and no Jewish.

On the eve of the British Mandate in 1917, Jerusalem Arab society was rooted, diverse, and connected to other cities, towns, and the rural areas of Palestine. A cosmopolitan city, Jerusalem saw a continuous and dynamic infusion of immigrants and travelers, many of whom stayed and made the city theirs. Over the course of the three decades of the Mandate, Arab society in Jerusalem continued to develop a vibrant, networked, and increasingly sophisticated milieu. Professor Jayyusi wrote that there was then a “radical rupture” in 1948: the establishment of the state of Israel.

Her collection of essays brings together distinguished scholars and writers and follows the history of Jerusalem from the culturally diverse Mandate period through its transformation into a predominantly Jewish city.
Essays detail often unexplored dimensions of the social and political fabric of a city that was rendered increasingly taut and fragile, even as areas of mutual interaction and shared institutions and neighborhoods between Arabs and Jews continued to develop.




















[book] DOING THE MOST GOOD
HOW EFFECTIVE ALTRUISM IS CHANGING
IDEAS ABOUT LIVING ETHICALLY
BY PETER SINGER
April 2015
Yale
Peter Singer is among the most lauded living ethicists in the world.
A vocal Atheist, this son of Viennese Jews who escaped Eruope to Australia wrote the bible of animal ethics. Here is his new Rx for living ethically.

Peter Singer’s books and ideas have been disturbing our complacency ever since the appearance of Animal Liberation. Now he directs our attention to a challenging new movement in which his own ideas have played a crucial role: effective altruism. Effective altruism is built upon the simple but profoundly unsettling idea that living a fully ethical life involves doing the most good. Such a life requires a rigorously unsentimental view of charitable giving: to be a worthy recipient of our support, an organization must be able to demonstrate that it will do more good with our money or our time than other options open to us. Singer introduces us to an array of remarkable people who are restructuring their lives in accordance with these ideas, and shows how, paradoxically, living altruistically often leads to greater personal fulfillment than living for oneself.
Doing the Most Good develops the challenges Singer has made, in the New York Times and Washington Post, to those who donate to the arts, and to charities focused on helping our fellow citizens, rather than those for whom we can do the most good. Effective altruists are extending our knowledge of the possibilities of living less selfishly, and of allowing reason, rather than emotion, to determine how we live. Doing the Most Good offers new hope for our ability to tackle the world’s most pressing problems.

















[book] Caregiving in Alzheimer's and Other Dementias
by Eric Pfeiffer, MD
Foreword by Gayle Sierens
April 28, 2015
Practical. Easy to read. Comprehensive. Encouraging. Accurate. All of these words describe this indispensable book that belongs in the hands of all family members and other caretak
Dr. Eric Pfeiffer, a physician who has devoted thirty years to patients suffering from all forms of dementia, here distills the wisdom of those years for the benefit of caregivers confronting some of life’s most challenging days. Dr. Pfeiffer’s genuine compassion and wise advice are certain not only to reduce caregiver stress but also to improve the patient’s quality of life.
In these pages are specific tips for all stages of caregiving, from the initial realization of the problem through mild, moderate, and severe stages of dementia, and even beyond, when a caregiver begins to resume a full life after the patient’s death. Dr. Pfeiffer identifies specific problems and provides practical solutions. He explains the importance of support groups and many other means of dealing with stressful days. For experienced caregivers and those new to the challenges, this book will be a profoundly useful guide to coping successfully.














[book] PROFESSOR STEWART'S INCREDIBLE NUMBERS
BY IAN STEWART (Warwick)
April 2015
Basic Books
At its heart, mathematics is about numbers, our fundamental tools for understanding the world. In Professor Stewart’s Incredible Numbers, Ian Stewart offers a delightful introduction to the numbers that surround us, from the common (Pi and 2) to the uncommon but no less consequential (1.059463 and 43,252,003,274,489,856,000). Along the way, Stewart takes us through prime numbers, cubic equations, the concept of zero, the possible positions on the Rubik’s Cube, the role of numbers in human history, and beyond! An unfailingly genial guide, Stewart brings his characteristic wit and erudition to bear on these incredible numbers, offering an engaging primer on the principles and power of math


















[book] SPIRITUAL DEFIANCE
BUILDING A BELOVED COMMUNITY OF RESISTANCE
BY ROBIN MEYERS (Reverend, Phd)
UCC Mayflower Congregational Church, Oklahoma
April 2015
Yale
During his thirty-year career as a parish minister and professor, Dr. Robin Meyers has focused on renewing the church as an instrument of social change and personal transformation.
In this provocative and passionate book, he explores the decline of the church as a community of believers and calls readers back to the church’s roots as a community of resistance.
Shifting the conversation about church renewal away from theological purity and marketing strategies that embrace cultural norms, and toward “embodied noncompliance” with the dominant culture, Meyers urges a return to the revolutionary spirit of early churches and 'ministries.'
Framing his discussion around three poems by twentieth-century Polish poet Anna Kamienska, Meyers casts the nature of faith as a force that stands against anything and everything that engenders death and indignity. He calls for active—sometimes even subversive—defiance of the ego’s temptations, of what he terms “the heresy of orthodoxy itself,” and of an uncritical acceptance of militarism and capitalism. Each chapter is a poignant and urgent invitation to recover the Beloved Community of Resistance.
















[book] WASHING THE DEAD
BY MICHAELLE BRAFMAN
April 14, 2015
Prospect Park Books
In this debut novel from an award-winning short-story writer, a suburban Milwaukee woman confronts her exile from the fondly remembered Orthodox Jewish community ripped from her by her mother's affair.
When the rabbi's wife summons her to perform the ritual burial washing of her beloved teacher, she returns to the spiritual and emotional home her mother burned down. Exhuming generations of secrets is the only way she can forgive her mother and in turn spare her daughter their crippling family legacy.
Michelle Brafman's work has appeared in Blackbird, Lilith, the minnesota review, Slate, and Tablet. She teaches fiction writing at Johns Hopkins and George Washington University


















[book] AFTER ABEL AND OTHER STORIES
By Michal Lemberger
April 2015
Prospect Park
Eve considers motherhood.
Miriam tends Moses.
Lot’s wife looks back.

Vividly reimagined with startling contemporary clarity, Michal Lemberger’s debut collection of short stories gives voice to silent, oft-marginalized biblical women: their ambitions, their love for their children, their values, their tremendous struggles and challenges. Informed by Lemberger’s deep knowledge of the Bible, each of these nine stories story recasts a biblical saga from the perspective of a pivotal woman.
“After Abel brings biblical women from the sidelines to the center of the story, in a compelling narrative reminiscent of Anita Diamant’s The Red Tent. These beautifully written stories feel like meeting Eve, Lot’s wife, and many other compelling characters for the first time.” —LAUREL CORONA, author of The Mapmaker’s Daughter and The Four Seasons: A Novel of Vivaldi’s Venice















[book] ONE NATION UNDER GOD
HOW CORPORATE AMERICA INVENTED CHRISTIAN AMERICA
BY KEVIN M. KruSE (Princeton)
April 2015
Basic Books
We’re often told that the United States is, was, and always has been a Christian nation. But in One Nation Under God, historian Kevin M. Kruse reveals that the idea of “Christian America” is an invention—and a relatively recent one at that.
This was news to me. But he makes a great case

As Kruse argues, the belief that America is fundamentally and formally a Christian nation originated in the 1930s when businessmen enlisted religious activists in their fight against FDR’s New Deal. Corporations from General Motors to Hilton Hotels bankrolled conservative clergymen, encouraging them to attack the New Deal as a program of “pagan statism” that perverted the central principle of Christianity: the sanctity and salvation of the individual. Their campaign for “freedom under God” culminated in the election of their close ally Dwight Eisenhower in 1952.
But this apparent triumph had an ironic twist. In Eisenhower’s hands, a religious movement born in opposition to the government was transformed into one that fused faith and the federal government as never before. During the 1950s, Eisenhower revolutionized the role of religion in American political culture, inventing new traditions from inaugural prayers to the National Prayer Breakfast. Meanwhile, Congress added the phrase “under God” to the Pledge of Allegiance and made “In God We Trust” the country’s first official motto. With private groups joining in, church membership soared to an all-time high of 69%. For the first time, Americans began to think of their country as an officially Christian nation.
During this moment, virtually all Americans—across the religious and political spectrum—believed that their country was “one nation under God.” But as Americans moved from broad generalities to the details of issues such as school prayer, cracks began to appear. Religious leaders rejected this “lowest common denomination” public religion, leaving conservative political activists to champion it alone. In Richard Nixon’s hands, a politics that conflated piety and patriotism became sole property of the right.
Provocative and authoritative, One Nation Under God reveals how the unholy alliance of money, religion, and politics created a false origin story that continues to define and divide American politics to this day.



















[book] EINSTEIN
HIS SPACE AND TIMES
BY STEVEN GIMBEL
Yale University Press
Jewish Lives series
April 2015
The commonly held view of Albert Einstein is of an eccentric genius for whom the pursuit of science was everything. But in actuality, the brilliant innovator whose Theory of Relativity forever reshaped our understanding of time was a man of his times, always politically engaged and driven by strong moral principles. An avowed pacifist, Einstein’s mistrust of authority and outspoken social and scientific views earned him death threats from Nazi sympathizers in the years preceding World War II. To him, science provided not only a means for understanding the behavior of the universe, but a foundation for considering the deeper questions of life and a way for the worldwide Jewish community to gain confidence and pride in itself.
Steven Gimbel’s biography presents Einstein in the context of the world he lived in, offering a fascinating portrait of a remarkable individual who remained actively engaged in international affairs throughout his life. This revealing work not only explains Einstein’s theories in understandable terms, it demonstrates how they directly emerged from the realities of his times and helped create the world we live in today.















[book] THE SECRET LANGUAGE OF DOCTORS
CRACKING THE CODE OF HOSPITAL CULTURE
BY DR. BRIAN GOLDMAN
(Mt Sinai Hospital, Toronto)
April 2015
Paperback edition, Triumph

Code Brown
Failure to Die
Frequent Flyers
Swallowers (BPD)
Most people have visited a doctor’s office or emergency room in their lifetime to gain clarity about an ailment or check in after a procedure. While doctors strive to ensure their patients understand their diagnoses, rarely do those outside the medical community understand the words and phrases we hear practitioners yell across a hospital hallway or murmur to a colleague behind office doors. Doctors and nurses use a kind of secret language, comprised of words unlikely to be found in a medical textbook or heard on television. In The Secret Language of Doctors, Dr. Brian Goldman decodes those code words for the average patient.

What does it mean when a patient has the symptoms of “incarceritis”? What are “blocking” and “turfing”? And why do you never want to be diagnosed with a “horrendoma”? Dr. Goldman reveals the meaning behind the colorful and secret expressions doctors use to describe difficult patients, situations, and medical conditions—including those they don’t want you to know. Gain profound insight into what doctors really think about patients in this funny and biting examination of modern medical culture.













[book] Einstein's Dice and Schrödinger's Cat:
How Two Great Minds Battled Quantum
Randomness to Create a Unified Theory of Physics
by Paul Halpern
April 2015
Basic Books
When the fuzzy indeterminacy of quantum mechanics overthrew the orderly world of Isaac Newton, Albert Einstein and Erwin Schrödinger were at the forefront of the revolution. Neither man was ever satisfied with the standard interpretation of quantum mechanics, however, and both rebelled against what they considered the most preposterous aspect of quantum mechanics: its randomness. Einstein famously quipped that God does not play dice with the universe, and Schrödinger constructed his famous fable of a cat that was neither alive nor dead not to explain quantum mechanics but to highlight the apparent absurdity of a theory gone wrong. But these two giants did more than just criticize: they fought back, seeking a Theory of Everything that would make the universe seem sensible again.
In Einstein’s Dice and Schrödinger’s Cat, physicist Paul Halpern tells the little-known story of how Einstein and Schrödinger searched, first as collaborators and then as competitors, for a theory that transcended quantum weirdness. This story of their quest—which ultimately failed—provides readers with new insights into the history of physics and the lives and work of two scientists whose obsessions drove its progress.
Today, much of modern physics remains focused on the search for a Theory of Everything. As Halpern explains, the recent discovery of the Higgs Boson makes the Standard Model—the closest thing we have to a unified theory— nearly complete. And while Einstein and Schrödinger failed in their attempt to explain everything in the cosmos through pure geometry, the development of string theory has, in its own quantum way, brought this idea back into vogue. As in so many things, even when they were wrong, Einstein and Schrödinger couldn’t help but get a great deal right.













[book] Einstein's Dice and Schrödinger's Cat:
How Two Great Minds Battled Quantum
Randomness to Create a Unified Theory of Physics
by Paul Halpern
April 2015
Basic Books
When the fuzzy indeterminacy of quantum mechanics overthrew the orderly world of Isaac Newton, Albert Einstein and Erwin Schrödinger were at the forefront of the revolution. Neither man was ever satisfied with the standard interpretation of quantum mechanics, however, and both rebelled against what they considered the most preposterous aspect of quantum mechanics: its randomness. Einstein famously quipped that God does not play dice with the universe, and Schrödinger constructed his famous fable of a cat that was neither alive nor dead not to explain quantum mechanics but to highlight the apparent absurdity of a theory gone wrong. But these two giants did more than just criticize: they fought back, seeking a Theory of Everything that would make the universe seem sensible again.
In Einstein’s Dice and Schrödinger’s Cat, physicist Paul Halpern tells the little-known story of how Einstein and Schrödinger searched, first as collaborators and then as competitors, for a theory that transcended quantum weirdness. This story of their quest—which ultimately failed—provides readers with new insights into the history of physics and the lives and work of two scientists whose obsessions drove its progress.
Today, much of modern physics remains focused on the search for a Theory of Everything. As Halpern explains, the recent discovery of the Higgs Boson makes the Standard Model—the closest thing we have to a unified theory— nearly complete. And while Einstein and Schrödinger failed in their attempt to explain everything in the cosmos through pure geometry, the development of string theory has, in its own quantum way, brought this idea back into vogue. As in so many things, even when they were wrong, Einstein and Schrödinger couldn’t help but get a great deal right.













[book] KL
A HISTORY OF THE NAZI CONCENTRATION CAMPS
By Nikolaus Wachsmann
April 2015
FS&G
The first comprehensive history of the Nazi concentration camps In a landmark work of history, Nikolaus Wachsmann offers an unprecedented, integrated account of the Nazi concentration camps from their inception in 1933 through their demise, seventy years ago, in the spring of 1945. The Third Reich has been studied in more depth than virtually any other period in history, and yet until now there has been no history of the camp system that tells the full story of its broad development and the everyday experiences of its inhabitants, both perpetrators and victims, and all those living in what Primo Levi called “the gray zone.”
In KL, Wachsmann fills this glaring gap in our understanding. He not only synthesizes a new generation of scholarly work, much of it untranslated and unknown outside of Germany, but also presents startling revelations, based on many years of archival research, about the functioning and scope of the camp system. Examining, close up, life and death inside the camps, and adopting a wider lens to show how the camp system was shaped by changing political, legal, social, economic, and military forces, Wachsmann produces a unified picture of the Nazi regime and its camps that we have never seen before.
A boldly ambitious work of deep importance, KL is destined to be a classic in the history of the twentieth century.

















[book] THE SOUND OF OUR STEPS
A NOVEL
By Ronit Matalon,
Translated by Dalya Bilu
April 2015
Metropolitan Books

Gorgeously observed and emotionally powerful, The Sound of Our Steps is an inventive novel of immigration and exile from Ronit Matalon, a major voice in contemporary Israeli fiction
In the beginning there was Lucette, who is the mother to three children—Sammy, a gentle giant, almost blind, but a genius with locks; Corinne, a flighty beauty who cannot keep a job; and "the child," an afterthought, who strives to make sense of her fractured Egyptian-Jewish immigrant family. Lucette's children would like a kinder, warmer home, but what they have is a government-issued concrete box, out in the thorns and sand on the outskirts of Tel Aviv; and their mother, hard-worn and hardscrabble, who cleans homes by night and makes school lunches by day. Lucette quarrels with everybody, speaks only Arabic and French, is scared only of snakes, and is as likely to lock her children out as to take in a stray dog.
The child recounts her years in Lucette's house, where Israel's wars do not intrude and hold no interest. She puzzles at the mysteries of her home, why Maurice, her father, a bitter revolutionary, makes only rare appearances. And why her mother rebuffs the kind rabbi whose home she cleans in his desire to adopt her. Always watching, the child comes to fill the holes with conjecture and story.
In a masterful accumulation of short, dense scenes, by turns sensual, violent, and darkly humorous, The Sound of Our Steps questions the virtue of a family bound only by necessity, and suggests that displacement may not lead to a better life, but perhaps to art.













[book] Women's Divination in Biblical Literature:
Prophecy, Necromancy, and Other Arts of Knowledge
(The Anchor Yale Bible Reference Library)
by Esther J. Hamori
April 2015
Yale University Press
Divination, the use of special talents and techniques to gain divine knowledge, was practiced in many different forms in ancient Israel and throughout the ancient world. The Hebrew Bible reveals a variety of traditions of women associated with divination. This sensitive and incisive book by respected scholar Esther J. Hamori examines the wide scope of women’s divinatory activities as portrayed in the Hebrew texts, offering readers a new appreciation of the surprising breadth of women’s “arts of knowledge” in biblical times. Unlike earlier approaches to the subject that have viewed prophecy separately from other forms of divination, Hamori’s study encompasses the full range of divinatory practices and the personages who performed them, from the female prophets and the medium of En-dor to the matriarch who interprets a birth omen and the “wise women” of Tekoa and Abel and more. In doing so, the author brings into clearer focus the complex, rich, and diverse world of ancient Israelite divination.
















[book] THE TWO-STATE DELUSION
Israel and Palestine
A Tale of Two Narratives
by Padraig O'Malley
April 2015
Viking
A leading peace and reconciliation expert (McCormack Grad School of Global and Policy Studies, U Mass) argues that a two-state solution is no longer a viable path to create lasting peace in Israel and Palestine.
Disputes over settlements, the right of return, the rise of Hamas, recognition of Israel as a Jewish state, and other intractable issues have repeatedly derailed peace negotiations between Israel and Palestine.
Now, in a book that is sure to spark controversy, renowned peacemaker Padraig O’Malley argues that the moment for a two-state solution has passed. After examining each issue and speaking with Palestinians and Israelis as well as negotiators directly involved in past summits, O’Malley concludes that even if such an agreement could be reached, it would be nearly impossible to implement given the staggering costs, Palestine’s political disunity and the viability of its economy, rapidly changing demographics, Israel’s continuing political shift to the right, global warming’s effect on the water supply, and more.
In this revelatory, hard-hitting book, O’Malley approaches the key issues pragmatically, without ideological bias, to show that we must find new frameworks for reconciliation if there is to be lasting peace between Palestine and Israel.
















[book] THE BIG GREEN TENT
A NOVEL
By Ludmila Ulitskaya
Translated by Bela Shayevich
April 2015
FSG
An absorbing novel of dissident life in the Soviet Union, by one of Russia’s most popular writers

The Big Green Tent is the kind of book the term “Russian novel” was invented for. A sweeping saga, it tells the story of three school friends who meet in Moscow in the 1950s and go on to embody the heroism, folly, compromise, and hope of the Soviet dissident experience. These three boys—an orphaned poet; a gifted, fragile pianist; and a budding photographer with a talent for collecting secrets—struggle to reach adulthood in a society where their heroes have been censored and exiled. Rich with love stories, intrigue, and a cast of dissenters and spies, The Big Green Tent offers a panoramic survey of life after Stalin and a dramatic investigation into the prospects for integrity in a society defined by the KGB. Each of the central characters seeks to transcend an oppressive regime through art, a love of Russian literature, and activism. And each of them ends up face-to-face with a secret police that is highly skilled at fomenting paranoia, division, and self-betrayal. An artist is chased into the woods, where he remains in hiding for four years; a researcher is forced to deem a patient insane, damning him to torture in a psychiatric ward; a man and his wife each become collaborators, without the other knowing. Ludmila Ulitskaya’s big yet intimate novel belongs to the tradition of Dostoyevsky, Tolstoy, and Pasternak: a work of politics, love, and belief that is a revelation of life in dark times.
















[book] HUMAN NATURE AND JEWISH THOUGHT
JUDAISM'S CASE FOR WHY A PERSON MATTERS
Library of Jewish Ideas
By Alan L. Mittleman (JTS)
April 2015
Princeton University Press
This book explores one of the great questions of our time: How can we preserve our sense of what it means to be a person while at the same time accepting what science tells us to be true--namely, that human nature is continuous with the rest of nature? What, in other words, does it mean to be a person in a world of things? Alan Mittleman shows how the Jewish tradition provides rich ways of understanding human nature and personhood that preserve human dignity and distinction in a world of neuroscience, evolutionary biology, biotechnology, and pervasive scientism. These ancient resources can speak to Jewish, non-Jewish, and secular readers alike.
Science may tell us what we are, Mittleman says, but it cannot tell us who we are, how we should live, or why we matter. Traditional Jewish thought, in open-minded dialogue with contemporary scientific perspectives, can help us answer these questions. Mittleman shows how, using sources ranging across the Jewish tradition, from the Hebrew Bible and the Talmud to more than a millennium of Jewish philosophy. Among the many subjects the book addresses are sexuality, birth and death, violence and evil, moral agency, and politics and economics. Throughout, Mittleman demonstrates how Jewish tradition brings new perspectives to--and challenges many current assumptions about--these central aspects of human nature.
A study of human nature in Jewish thought and an original contribution to Jewish philosophy, this is a book for anyone interested in what it means to be human in a scientific age.
















[book] [book]

























[book] FED, WHITE, AND BLUE
Finding America and My Fork
By Simon Majumdar
Foreword by Alton Brown
April 7, 2015
Hudson Street Press, Penguin Majumdar, LA based food writer and Food Network star set out across the USA to discover what it is to be American, on bite at a time.
Simon Majumdar is probably not your typical idea of an immigrant. As he says, “I’m well rested, not particularly poor, and the only time I ever encounter ‘huddled masses’ is in line at Costco.” But immigrate he did, and thanks to a Homeland Security agent who asked if he planned to make it official, the journey chronicled in Fed, White, and Blue was born. In it, Simon sets off on a trek across the United States to find out what it really means to become an American, using what he knows best: food.
Simon stops in Plymouth, Massachusetts, to learn about what the pilgrims ate (and that playing Wampanoag football with large men is to be avoided); a SHABBAT dinner in Kansas; Wisconsin to make cheese (and get sprayed with hot whey); and LA to cook at a Filipino restaurant in the hope of making his in-laws proud. Simon attacks with gusto the food cultures that make up America—brewing beer, farming, working at a food bank, and even finding himself at a tailgate. Full of heart, humor, history, and of course, food, Fed, White, and Blue is a warm, funny, and inspiring portrait of becoming American.
In “Pressing the Shabbat Reset Button,” he visits Yosef Silver in Overland Park, Kansas,















[book] EVEN IN DARKNESS
A NOVEL
BY BARBARA STARK-NEMON
April 2015
She Writes Press
Spanning a century and three continents, Even in Darkness tells the story of Kläre Kohler, whose early years as a dutiful daughter of a prosperous German-Jewish family hardly anticipate the often-harrowing life she faces as an adult—a saga of family, a lover, two world wars, a concentration camp and the unconventional life she builds in post-war Germany. As the world changes around her, Kläre makes boundary-crossing choices in order to protect the people she loves—and to save herself. Based on a true story, Even in Darkness highlights the intimate experience of Kläre’s reinvention as she faces the destruction of life as she knew it, and traces her path beyond survival to wisdom, meaning, and—most unexpectedly—love.















[book] WORDS WITHOUT MUSIC
a memoir
by PHILIP GLASS
April 2015
The long-awaited memoir by “the most prolific and popular of all contemporary composers” (New York Times).
A world-renowned composer of symphonies, operas, and film scores, Philip Glass has, almost single-handedly, crafted the dominant sound of late-twentieth-century classical music. Yet here in Words Without Music, he creates an entirely new and unexpected voice, that of a born storyteller and an acutely insightful chronicler, whose behind-the-scenes recollections allow readers to experience those moments of creative fusion when life so magically merged with art.
"If you go to New York City to study music, you'll end up like your uncle Henry," Glass's mother warned her incautious and curious nineteen-year-old son. It was the early summer of 1956, and Ida Glass was concerned that her precocious Philip, already a graduate of the University of Chicago, would end up an itinerant musician, playing in vaudeville houses and dance halls all over the country, just like his cigar-smoking, bantamweight uncle. One could hardly blame Mrs. Glass for worrying that her teenage son would end up as a musical vagabond after initially failing to get into Juilliard. Yet, the transformation of a young man from budding musical prodigy to world-renowned composer is the story of this commanding memoir.
From his childhood in post–World War II Baltimore to his student days in Chicago, at Juilliard, and his first journey to Paris, where he studied under the formidable Nadia Boulanger, Glass movingly recalls his early mentors, while reconstructing the places that helped shape his artistic consciousness. From a life-changing trip to India, where he met with gurus and first learned of Gandhi’s Salt March, to the gritty streets of New York in the 1970s, where the composer returned, working day jobs as a furniture mover, cabbie, and an unlicensed plumber, Glass leads the life of a Parisian bohemian artist, only now transported to late-twentieth-century America.
Yet even after Glass’s talent was first widely recognized with the sensational premiere of Einstein on the Beach in 1976, even after he stopped renewing his hack license and gained international recognition for operatic works like Satyagraha, Orphée, and Akhnaten, the son of a Baltimore record store owner never abandoned his earliest universal ideals throughout his memorable collaborations with Allen Ginsberg, Ravi Shankar, Robert Wilson, Doris Lessing, Martin Scorsese, and many others, all of the highest artistic order.
Few major composers are celebrated as writers, but Philip Glass, in this loving and slyly humorous autobiography, breaks across genres and re-creates, here in words, the thrill that results from artistic creation. Words Without Music ultimately affirms the power of music to change the world.
32 pages of photographs
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[book] CHILDREN OF THE STONE:
THE POWER OF MUSIC IN A HARD LAND
BY SANDY TOLAN
Bloomsbury
April 2015
Children of the Stone is the unlikely story of Ramzi Hussein Aburedwan, a boy from a Palestinian refugee camp in Ramallah who confronts the occupying army, gets an education, masters an instrument, dreams of something much bigger than himself, and then inspires scores of others to work with him to make that dream a reality. That dream is of a music school in the midst of a refugee camp in Ramallah, a school that will transform the lives of thousands of children through music. Daniel Barenboim, the Israeli musician and music director of La Scala in Milan and the Berlin Opera, is among those who help Ramzi realize his dream. He has played with Ramzi frequently, at chamber music concerts in Al-Kamandjati, the school Ramzi worked so hard to build, and in the West-Eastern Divan Orchestra that Barenboim founded with the late Palestinian intellectual, Edward Said. Children of the Stone is a story about music, freedom and conflict; determination and vision. It's a vivid portrait of life amid checkpoints and military occupation, a growing movement of nonviolent resistance, the past and future of musical collaboration across the Israeli-Palestinian divide, and the potential of music to help children see new possibilities for their lives. Above all, Children of the Stone chronicles the journey of Ramzi Aburedwan, and how he worked against the odds to create something lasting and beautiful in a war-torn land.
















[book] A Gushing Fountain:
A Novel
by Martin Walser
Translated by David Dollenmayer
April 2015
Arcade
Appearing for the first time in English, this masterful novel by one of the foremost figures of postwar German literature is an indelible portrait of Nazism slowly overtaking and poisoning a small town.
Semi-autobiographical, it is also a remarkably vivid account of a childhood fraught with troubles, yet full of remembered love and touched by miracle.
In a provincial town on Lake Constance, Johann basks in the affection of the colorful staff and regulars at the Station Restaurant. Though his parents struggle to make ends meet, around him the world is rich in mystery: the attraction of girls; the power of words and his gift for music; his rivalry with his best friend, Adolf, son of the local Brownshirt leader; a circus that comes to town bringing Anita, whose love he and Adolf compete to win. But in these hard times, with businesses failing all around them and life savings gone in an instant, people whisper that only Hitler can save them. As the Nazis gradually infiltrate the churches, the school, the youth organizations—even the restaurant—and come to power, we see through Johann’s eyes how the voices of dissent are silenced one by one, until war begins the body count that will include his beloved older brother.
















[book] Jewish Festival Food
Eating for Special Occasions:
75 Delicious Dishes For Every Holiday
And Celebration
by Marlena Spieler
April 7, 2015
Lorenz Books
This book features 75 delicious dishes for every holiday and celebration. You can discover the classic meals enjoyed by Jewish people at Chanukkah, Pesach and other holidays and festivals, including traditional Ashkenazi challah bread, matzo brei, gefilte fish, piroshki, blintzes and mandelbrot. It features over 75 delicious dishes that have been drawn from Eastern Europe, the United States, the Middle East, North Africa and India. It includes more than 300 fabulous photographs, including straightforward illustrated step-by-step instructions and pictures of each finished dish to help you make every celebration a success. The Jewish people have a special dish for every festival occasion, and this glorious mix of classic and contemporary dishes draws on the traditions of the global Jewish community. Celebrate this extraordinary worldwide heritage with Lamb and Globe Artichokes at Passover, Herring Salad with Beetroot and Sour Cream for Shabbat, Hungarian Cherry Soup at Shavuot, Moroccan Carrot Salad at Rosh Hashanah, and Tunisian Almond Cigars at Chanukkah. Packed with fascinating background detail about culinary traditions, this informative book offers a wonderful collection of authentic holiday and festival recipes.

























[book] Big Gay Ice Cream
Saucy Stories & Frozen Treats:
Going All the Way with Ice Cream
by Bryan Petroff and Douglas Quint
Foreword by Anthony Bourdain
April 28, 2015
Clarkson Potter
Welcome to Big Gay Ice Cream’s debut cookbook, a yearbook of ice cream accomplishments—all the recipes you need to create delicious frozen treats.

The best ice cream I ever ate was from the their truck. Maybe it was because it was salty
Bryan and Douglas were musicians who needed another source of income. A musician friend drove a summer ice cream truck and suggested they do the same. They did. For a few years they sold ice cream from a roving truck. From there they became famous. The wait time for the truck in Union Square was usually an hour for a cone.
They then opened a shop in the East Village, got another machine in PA, opened a shop in the West Village of NYC, then Philly, then LA, and now a book

New to making ice cream at home? Never fear—freshman year starts off simple with store-bought toppings and shopping lists for the home ice cream parlor.
Sophomore year kicks it up a notch with tasty sauces and crunchy toppings.
Junior year puts your new skills to work with shakes, floats, and sundaes inspired by some of Big Gay Ice Cream’s top-selling treats, including, of course, the Salty Pimp.
In Senior year, get serious with outrageously delicious sorbets and ice cream recipes.
Along the way, you can enjoy Bryan and Doug’s stranger-than-fiction stories, cheeky humor, vibrant photography and illustrations, and plenty of culinary and celebrity cameos (including an introduction by Headmaster Anthony Bourdain)..



















[book] Mindsharing
The Art of Crowdsourcing Everything
by Lior Zoref
April 28, 2015
Portfolio
Lior Zoref is a crowd wisdom researcher, and an international speaker. A graduate of Technion, he a studying for a PhD from Bar Ilan. For 14 years, he was employed by Microsoft and had a stint as a VP of Marketing for Consumer and Online Services.
After he left his job at Microsoft, he asked friends on Facebook what he should do. He sort of crowdsourced his future. People told him that he was so networked that he should be a mindsharer.
In the words of Thomas P Hughes, the great innovators no longer work alone in a lab. They work in teams and collaborate.
Whether we need to make better financial choices, find the love of our life, or transform our career, crowdsourcing is the key to making quicker, wiser, more objective decisions. But few of us even come close to tapping the full potential of our online personal networks.
An enthusiastic Lior Zoref offers guidelines for applying what he calls "mind sharing" in new ways. For instance, he shows how a mother's Facebook update saved the life of a four-year-old boy, and how a manager used LinkedIn to create a year's worth of market research in less than a day. Zoref's clients are using his techniques to innovate and problem-solve in record time. Now he reveals how crowdsourcing has the ability to supercharge our thinking and upgrade every aspect of our lives. .























MAY 2015 BOOKS




[book] Single Jewish Male Seeking Soul Mate
a novel
by Letty Cottin Pogrebin
The Feminist Press at CUNY
May 2015
Feminist icon Letty Cottin Pogrebin's second novel follows Zach Levy, the left-leaning son of Holocaust survivors who promises his mother that he'll marry within the tribe. But when Zach falls for Cleo, an African American activist grappling with her own inherited trauma, he must reconcile the family he loves with the woman who might be his soul mate. A New York love story complicated by the legacies and modern tension of Jewish American and African American history, SJM Seeking explores what happens when the heart runs into the reality of politics, history, and the weight of family promises.

Letty Cottin Pogrebin is a leading figure in Jewish and feminist activism. She is a founding editor and writer for Ms. magazine, and the author of eleven books, including the memoir Getting Over Getting Older (1996), the novel Three Daughters (2003), and the groundbreaking How to Be a Friend to a Friend Who's Sick (2013). She is also the editor for the anthology Stories for Free Children (1982), and a co-creator of Free to Be . . . You and Me and Free to Be . . . A Family. Her articles, op-eds, and columns have been published frequently in a wide variety of magazines and publications, including the New York Times, Harper's Bazaar, and the Ladies Home Journal.



















[book] When the Balls Drop
by Brad Garrett (Brad Gerstenfeld)
Gallery Books
May 5, 2015
A refreshingly candid and wickedly funny look at life’s second half from Everybody Loves Raymond TV sitcom star and comic Brad Garrett.

In this no-holds-barred book of comedic and personal essays, Brad Garrett waxes hilarious—and irreverently honest—about the gaffes, challenges, and ultimately the joys of middle age as he advises us on how to best approach the dreaded “second half” of life.

Ranging in topics from genetics to genitals, weight to women, and dating to diarrhea, Brad leaves no stone unturned in this laugh-out-loud look at getting older. With pieces such as “No Scales in Heaven,” in which Brad points out the essential pointlessness of overthinking diet and exercise, and “Celebrating Your E.D. (erectile dysfunction) During Your Mid-Life Crisis,” the star comedian encourages you to forget the overwhelming concerns that accompany middle age and to welcome the laughs—even if you have a fifty-fifty chance of throwing your back out in doing so.
Penned in Brad’s signature witty, conversational, no-nonsense style that has cemented his status as an icon in the comedy industry, this autobiographical book will teach you the most important thing: that, no matter what, we’re all in this together. So embrace it.

















[book] LEON BLUM
Léon Blum
Prime Minister, Socialist, Zionist
by Prof. Pierre Birnbaum
Yale University Press
Jewish Lives series
May 2015
Léon Blum (1872–1950) was many things: a socialist and political activist, leader of the Popular Front; a dedicated statesman who served as France's prime minister three times; a hero who courageously opposed anti-Semitism, Nazi aggression, and the pro-German Vichy government; a passionate lover of women, art, and life. A tireless champion for workers’ rights, Blum dramatically changed French society by establishing the forty-hour work week, paid holidays, and collective bargaining on wage claims. He was also a proud Jew and Zionist, and a survivor who endured the horrors of Buchenwald and Dachau.  
Unlike previous biographies that downplay the significance of Blum’s Jewish heritage on his progressive politics, Pierre Birnbaum’s enlightening portrait depicts an extraordinary man whose political convictions were shaped and driven by his religious and cultural background. The author powerfully demonstrates how Blum’s Jewishness was central to his milieu and mission from his earliest entry into the political arena in reaction to the infamous Dreyfus Affair, and how it sustained and motivated him throughout the remainder of his life.

















ALLY:
My Journey Across the American-Israeli Divide
By Michael B. Oren
Random House
May 26, 2015
From Michael Oren—former Ambassador and bestselling author of Six Days of War—comes a memoir of his time as Israel’s Ambassador to the United States and a fascinating and critical look at US-Israeli relations.
Michael Oren served as Israel’s ambassador to the United States from 2009-2013, a transformative period for America and a time of violent revolutions throughout the Middle East. Hundreds of thousands of the region’s people were killed, and the lives of millions more threatened. Israel and America grappled not only with the peace process and other complex bilateral issues, but matters such as terrorism and the Iranian nuclear program which imperiled the world. The alliance would be subjected to enormous strains and its future questioned by commentators in both countries. On more than one occasion, the friendship’s very fabric seemed near to unraveling.
This is the story of that alliance and of its divides, as experienced by one who treasures his American identity while proudly serving the State of Israel. In a world in which presidents and prime ministers can chat or shout at each other by videophone, without any need for go-betweens, the role of an ambassador seems increasingly nebulous. But ambassadors represent not only leaders but peoples and, in the case of Americans and Israelis, peoples linked at multiple levels.
A quintessentially American story of a young person who refused to relinquish a dream, irrespective of the obstacles, and an inherently Israeli story about assuming onerous responsibilities. It is a record, a chronical, and a confession. And it is a story about love, about someone fortunate enough to love two countries and to represent one to the other. But, above all, this memoir is a testament to an alliance that was and will remain vital for Americans, Israelis, and the world.















[book] THE ABYSS
Bridging the Divide Between
Israel and the Arab World
by Eli Avidar
May 2015
Rowman and Littlefied
Eli Avidar looks into the abyss that divides Israel from its Arab neighbors, to understand what are the inherent flaws, prevailing misunderstandings, and tragic mistakes that characterize the relations and bloodletting, and how, if at all possible, to bridge the differences. By doing so, he offers a new perspective about the reality of the Middle East, Islamic extremism, Israel’s unilateral withdrawals, economic sanctions, the vision of a “New Middle East,” and the Israeli desire for full normalization with its neighbors, and all the other clichés that have transformed the Hebrew-Arab lexicon into a complex and hopeless minefield. It raises the question of whether the ongoing violent conflict between Israel and its neighbors might also be the result of a serious short circuit in communications. Is it possible that Israel, which has invested efforts and resources to know its adversaries, never even bothered to properly understand their language and their culture? Is it possible that its leaders, who made their way to the top through the military and were privileged to the most deeply hidden intelligence secrets, never even learned to send messages of peace and reconciliation that the other side could respect and understand?
The book spans across six decades and explains why the main diplomatic initiatives have so far failed to solve the Israel-Palestinian conflict, and what needs to be done to break out of the vicious circle of ignorance and mutual suspicion that characterizes the conflict. Avidar uses his experience as diplomatic advisor to former Foreign Minister Ariel Sharon and as head of Israel’s representative office in Qatar to reveal secret diplomatic meetings as well as the dynamics of the unique and complex diplomacy of the Middle East. He also tells about the activities of the 504 division of the Israel Defense Forces Intelligence Unit, in which he served as an operator of agents.















[book] SKIES OF PARCHMENT,
SEAS OF INK
JEWISH ILLUMINATED MANUSCRIPTS
Edited by Marc Michael Epstein (Vassar)
Princeton
May 2015
The love of books in the Jewish tradition extends back over many centuries, and the ways of interpreting those books are as myriad as the traditions themselves. Skies of Parchment, Seas of Ink offers the first full survey of Jewish illuminated manuscripts, ranging from their origins in the Middle Ages to the present day. Featuring some of the most beautiful examples of Jewish art of all time--including hand-illustrated versions of the Bible, the Haggadah, the prayer book, marriage documents, and other beloved Jewish texts--the book introduces readers to the history of these manuscripts and their interpretation.
Edited by Marc Michael Epstein with contributions from leading experts, this sumptuous volume features a lively and informative text, showing how Jewish aesthetic tastes and iconography overlapped with and diverged from those of Christianity, Islam, and other traditions. Featured manuscripts were commissioned by Jews and produced by Jews and non-Jews over many centuries, and represent Eastern and Western perspectives and the views of both pietistic and liberal communities across the Diaspora, including Europe, Israel, the Middle East, and Africa.
Magnificently illustrated with pages from hundreds of manuscripts, many previously unpublished or rarely seen, Skies of Parchment, Seas of Ink offers surprising new perspectives on Jewish life, presenting the books of the People of the Book as never before.

Contributors include Eva Frojmovic, JS Jacobs, H Lachter, Shalom Sabar, Ray Scheindlin, Agnes Veto, Susan Vick, Barbara Wolff and Diane Wolfthal













[book] JOSHUA 1-12
A NEW TRANSLATION with INTRODUCTION AND COMMENTARY
By Thomas H. Dozeman (Union)
May 2015
Yale University Press / Anchor
An acknowledged expert on the Hebrew Bible, Thomas Dozeman offers a fresh translation of the Hebrew and Greek texts of the book of Joshua and explores the nature, function, and causes of the religious violence depicted therein. By blending the distinct teachings of Deuteronomy and the Priestly literature, Dozeman provides a unique interpretation of holy war as a form of sacred genocide, arguing that, since peace in the promised land required the elimination of the populations of all existent royal cities, a general purging of the land accompanied the progress of the ark of the covenant. This essential work of religious scholarship demonstrates how the theme of total genocide is reinterpreted as partial conquest when redactors place Joshua, an independent book, between Deuteronomy and Judges. The author traces the evolution of this reinterpretation of the central themes of religious violence while providing a comparison of the two textual versions of Joshua and an insightful analysis of the book’s reception history. .
















[book] LANGUAGE AND LITERACY IN ROMAN JUDAEA
A STUDY OF THE BAR KOKHBA DOCUMENTS
by Michael Owen Wise (UN-SP)
May 2015
Yale University Press / Anchor
This comprehensive exploration of language and literacy in the multi-lingual environment of Roman Palestine (c. 63 B.C.E. to 136 C.E.) is based on Michael Wise’s extensive study of 145 Hebrew, Aramaic, Greek, and Nabataean contracts and letters preserved among the Bar Kokhba texts, a valuable cache of ancient Middle Eastern artifacts. His investigation of Judean documentary and epistolary culture derives for the first time numerical data concerning literacy rates, language choices, and writing fluency during the two-century span between Pompey’s conquest and Hadrian’s rule. He explores questions of who could read in these ancient times of Jesus and Hillel, what they read, and how language worked in this complex multi-tongued milieu. Included also is an analysis of the ways these documents were written and the interplay among authors, secretaries, and scribes. Additional analysis provides readers with a detailed picture of the people, families, and lives behind the text.





















[book] THE VILNA VEGETARIAN COOKBOOK
BY FANIA LEWANDO
Garden-Fresh Recipes Rediscovered and
Adapted for Today's Kitchen
FOREWORD BY JOAN NATHAN
Translated from Yiddish and
Annotated by Eve Jochnowitz
May 2015
Schocken Books
Beautifully translated for a new generation of devotees of delicious and healthy eating: a groundbreaking, mouthwatering vegetarian cookbook originally published in Yiddish in pre–World War II Vilna and miraculously rediscovered more than half a century later.
In 1938, Fania Lewando, the proprietor of a popular vegetarian restaurant in Vilna, Lithuania, published a Yiddish vegetarian cookbook unlike any that had come before. Its 400 recipes ranged from traditional Jewish dishes (kugel, blintzes, fruit compote, borscht) to vegetarian versions of Jewish holiday staples (cholent, kishke, schnitzel) to appetizers, soups, main courses, and desserts that introduced vegetables and fruits that had not traditionally been part of the repertoire of the Jewish homemaker (Chickpea Cutlets, Jerusalem Artichoke Soup; Leek Frittata; Apple Charlotte with Whole Wheat Breadcrumbs). Also included were impassioned essays by Lewando and by a physician about the benefits of vegetarianism. Accompanying the recipes were lush full-color drawings of vegetables and fruit that had originally appeared on bilingual (Yiddish and English) seed packets. Lewando's cookbook was sold throughout Europe.
Lewando and her husband died during World War II, and it was assumed that all but a few family-owned and archival copies of her cookbook vanished along with most of European Jewry. But in 1995, a couple attending an antiquarian book fair in England came upon a copy of Lewando's cookbook. Recognizing its historical value, they purchased it and donated it to the YIVO Institute for Jewish Research in New York City, the premier repository for books and artifacts relating to prewar European Jewry. Enchanted by the book's contents and by its backstory, YIVO commissioned a translation of the book that will make Lewando's charming, delicious, and practical recipes available to an audience beyond the wildest dreams of the visionary woman who created them.















[book] THE BOOK OF ARON
A NOVEL
By Jim Shephard
MAY 2015
Knopf
From the hugely acclaimed National Book Award finalist, a novel that will join the shortlist of classics about the Holocaust and the children caught up in it.
Aron, the narrator, is an engaging if peculiar young boy whose family is driven from the countryside into the Warsaw Ghetto. As his family is slowly stripped away from him, Aron and a handful of boys and girls risk their lives, smuggling and trading things through the "quarantine walls" to keep their people alive, hunted all the while by blackmailers and by Jewish, Polish, and German police (not to mention the Gestapo). Eventually Aron is "rescued" by Janusz Korczak, a Jewish-Polish doctor and advocate of children's rights famous throughout prewar Europe who, once the Nazis swept in, was put in charge of the ghetto orphanage. In the end, of course, he and his staff and all the children are put on a train to Treblinka, but has Aron managed to escape, to spread word about the atrocities, as Korczak hoped he would?
Jim Shephard has masterfully made this child's-eye view of the Warsaw Ghetto mesmerizing, sometimes comic despite all odds, and truly heartbreaking. It is nothing less than a masterpiece.
















[book] The Odd Woman and the City:
A Memoir
by Vivian Gornick
MAY 19, 2015
FS&G
Born in 1935 in the Bronx to Jewish left-wingers, Vivian Gornick grew up torn between the simplicity of radical politics and the complexity of literature. “One day,” she writes in her 2008 collection of critical essays, The Men in My Life, “It was exciting to say to myself, ‘the only reality is the system.’ The next, I’d pick up Anna Karenina, and the sole reality of the system would do a slow dissolve.” Over the course of her long career, she has managed to capture—in eleven books and countless essays and articles—both the grandness of political ideals with the complexities of inner life. As a reporter for the Village Voice in the 1970s, she chronicled the politics of the feminist movement through her own conversion to the cause. In her essays, she pushed herself to understand how her commitment to the movement had changed her daily life. Her 1987 account of her relationship with her mother, Fierce Attachments, brought analytic insight to bear on the struggle to assert oneself. Readers of the contemporary memoir boom may find many of its hallmarks—biting observation, bare and casual honesty—drawn from Gornick’s work. Recently, Gornick has turned her attention to the radicalism of others. Her two biographies, of Emma Goldman and Elizabeth Cady Stanton, both ask a question to which she has turned throughout her work: what does it mean to live a life informed by difficult ideas?

In this new book, a memoir, she creates a contentious, deeply moving ode to friendship, love, and urban life in the spirit of Fierce Attachments. A memoir of self-discovery and the dilemma of connection in our time, The Odd Woman and the City explores the rhythms, chance encounters, and ever-changing friendships of urban life that forge the sensibility of a fiercely independent woman who has lived out her conflicts, not her fantasies, in a city (New York) that has done the same.
Running steadily through the book is Vivian Gornick’s exchange of more than twenty years with Leonard, a gay man who is sophisticated about his own unhappiness, whose friendship has "shed more light on the mysterious nature of ordinary human relations than has any other intimacy" she has known. The exchange between Gornick and Leonard acts as a Greek chorus to the main action of the narrator’s continual engagement on the street with grocers, derelicts, and doormen; people on the bus, cross-dressers on the corner, and acquaintances by the handful. In Leonard she sees herself reflected plain; out on the street she makes sense of what she sees.
Written as a narrative collage that includes meditative pieces on the making of a modern feminist, the role of the flaneur in urban literature, and the evolution of friendship over the past two centuries, The Odd Woman and the City beautifully bookends Gornick’s acclaimed Fierce Attachments, in which we first encountered her rich relationship with the ultimate metropolis.















[book] Cursed Victory
A History of Israel and
the Occupied Territories,
1967 to the Present
by Ahron Bregman
MAY 2015
Pegasus
An authoritative and impassioned history of the aftermath of the Six Day War—by a former Israeli IDF Captain — and a cogent argument for an end to the occupation.
In a move that would forever alter the map of the Middle East, Israel captured the West Bank, Golan Heights, Gaza Strip and Sinai Peninsula in 1967's brief but pivotal Six Day War. Cursed Victory is the first complete history of the war's troubled aftermath—a military occupation of the Palestinian territories that is now well into its fifth decade.
Drawing on unprecedented access to high-level sources, top-secret memos and never-before-published letters, the book provides a gripping and unvarnished chronicle of how what Israel promised would be an 'enlightened occupation' quickly turned sour, and the anguished diplomatic attempts to bring it to an end. Bregman sheds fresh light on critical moments in the peace process, taking us behind the scenes as decisions about the fate of the territories were made, and more often, as crucial opportunities to resolve the conflict were missed. As the narrative moves from Jerusalem to New York, Oslo to Beirut, and from the late 1960s to the present day, Cursed Victory provides vivid portraits of the key players in this unfolding drama, including Moshe Dayan, King Hussein of Jordan, Bill Clinton, and Yasser Arafat. Yet Bregman always reminds us how diplomatic and back-room negotiations affected the daily lives of millions of Arabs, and how the Palestinian resistance, especially during the first and second intifadas, and now in recent tragic developments, have shaped the political arena.

As Bregman concludes, the occupation has become a dark stain on Israel's history. Cursed Victory is essential reading for anyone who wants to understand the origins of the ongoing conflict in the region.
















[book] TEACHING PLATO IN PALESTINE
Philosophy in a Divided World
by Carlos Fraenkel (Oxford, McGill)
Foreword by Michael Walzer
MAY 2015
Princeton University Press
Teaching Plato in Palestine is part intellectual travelogue, part plea for integrating philosophy into our personal and public life. Philosophical toolkit in tow, Carlos Fraenkel invites readers on a tour around the world as he meets students at Palestinian and Indonesian universities, lapsed Hasidic Jews in New York, teenagers from poor neighborhoods in Brazil, and the descendants of Iroquois warriors in Canada. They turn to Plato and Aristotle, al-Ghaz?l? and Maimonides, Spinoza and Nietzsche for help to tackle big questions: Does God exist? Is piety worth it? Can violence be justified? What is social justice and how can we get there? Who should rule? And how shall we deal with the legacy of colonialism? Fraenkel shows how useful the tools of philosophy can be--particularly in places fraught with conflict--to clarify such questions and explore answers to them. In the course of the discussions, different viewpoints often clash. That's a good thing, Fraenkel argues, as long as we turn our disagreements on moral, religious, and philosophical issues into what he calls a "culture of debate." Conceived as a joint search for the truth, a culture of debate gives us a chance to examine the beliefs and values we were brought up with and often take for granted. It won't lead to easy answers, Fraenkel admits, but debate, if philosophically nuanced, is more attractive than either forcing our views on others or becoming mired in multicultural complacency--and behaving as if differences didn't matter at all.
















[book] ALEXANDRIAN SUMMER
BY YITZHAK GORMEZANO GOREN
Translated by Yardenna Greenspan
MAY 2015
New Vessel Press
Alexandrian Summer is the story of two Jewish families living their frenzied last days in the doomed cosmopolitan social whirl of Alexandria just before fleeing Egypt for Israel in 1951. The conventions of the Egyptian upper-middle class are laid bare in this dazzling novel, which exposes startling sexual hypocrisies and portrays a now vanished polyglot world of horse-racing, seaside promenades, and elegant night clubs.
Hamdi-Ali senior is an old-time patriarch with more than a dash of strong Turkish blood. His handsome elder son, a promising horse jockey, can't afford sexual frustration, as it leads him to overeat and imperil his career, but the woman he lusts after won't let him get beyond undoing a few buttons. Victor, the younger son, takes his pleasure with other boys. But the true heroine of the story—richly evoked in a pungent upstairs/downstairs mix—is the raucous, seductive city of Alexandria itself. Published in Hebrew in 1978, Alexandrian Summer appears now in translation for the first time.
Yitzhak Gormezano Goren was born in Alexandria, Egypt, in 1941 and immigrated to Israel as a child. A playwright and novelist, Goren studied English and French literature at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem and Tel Aviv University. In 1982, he cofounded the Bimat Kedem Theater.
















[book] THE LIFE OF SAUL BELLOW
TO FAME AND FORTUNE
1915 – 1964
BY ZACHARY LEADER
MAY 2015
Knopf
Saul Bellow was the most decorated writer in American history, the winner, among other awards, of the Nobel Prize for Literature, three National Book Awards, and the Pulitzer Prize. The Life of Saul Bellow by the acclaimed scholar and literary historian Zachary Leader will mark the centenary of Bellow’s birth as well as the tenth anniversary of his death. Leader has been granted unprecedented access to Bellow’s papers, including much previously restricted material. He has conducted interviews with over 150 of Bellow’s relatives, close friends, colleagues, and lovers, a number of whom have never spoken to researchers before. Through detailed exploration of Bellow’s writings, and the private history that informed them, Leader chronicles a singular life in letters, offering original and nuanced accounts not only of the novelist’s development and rise to eminence, but of his many identities—as writer, polemicist, husband, father, Chicagoan, American, Jew.
The biography is published in two volumes. The first volume, To Fame and Fortune, 1915–1964, traces Bellow’s Russian roots, his birth and early childhood in Quebec, his years in Chicago, his travels in Mexico, Europe, and Israel, the first three of his five marriages, and the novels from Dangling Man and The Adventures of Augie March to the best-selling Herzog. New light is shed on Bellow’s relationships with fellow writers, including Ralph Ellison, John Berryman, Philip Roth, and Lionel Trilling, and on his turbulent and influential life away from the desk, as full of incident as his fiction. Bellow emerges as a compelling character, and Leader’s powerful accounts of his writings, published and unpublished, forward the case for his being, as the critic James Wood puts it, ‘the greatest writer of American prose of the twentieth century.’













[book] The Ignorant Maestro
How Great Leaders Inspire
Unpredictable Brilliance
by Itay Talgam (Tel Aviv)
Portfolio
May 2015

A little vague
And probably better if you are a conductor or musician

BLURB: What leaders in any field can learn from legendary conductors and their mixtures of control and letting go. A conductor in front of his orchestra is an iconic symbol of leadership—but what does a maestro actually do in order to create unity, excellence and harmony? And how can a leader in other fields, remote from violin playing and Mozart, benefit from observing orchestral conductors?
Itay Talgam explores the different ways a maestro can work with his orchestra, by examining the leadership styles of six of the most famous and distinctive conductors of all time: the commanding Ricardo Muti, the fatherly and passionate Arturo Toscanini, the calm Richard Strauss, the guru-like Herbert von Karajan, the dancing Carlos Kleiber, and the master of dialogue Leonard Bernstein.
Against the backdrop of traditional controlling leadership, Talgam shows how great contemporary leadership mixes control and letting go, promotes new knowledge by choosing to be ignorant, creates unity through embracing gaps, and enhances leadership effectiveness by adopting keynote listening.
His TED talk on how to conduct an orchestra received 2 million pageviews.
Using the same universal tools, leaders can conduct their organizations to their maximum potential—whether in business, education, government, sports, or any other field.
















[book] THE DEATH'S HEAD CHESS CLUB
A NOVEL
BY JOHN DONOGHUE
MAY 12, 2015
FS&G
A novel of the improbable friendship that arises between a Nazi officer and a Jewish chessplayer in Auschwitz SS Obersturmfuhrer Paul Meissner arrives in Auschwitz from the Russian front wounded and fit only for administrative duty. His most pressing task is to improve camp morale and he establishes a chess club, and allows officers and enlisted men to gamble on the games. Soon Meissner learns that chess is also played among the prisoners, and there are rumors of an unbeatable Jew known as "the Watchmaker." Meissner's superiors begin to demand that he demonstrate German superiority by pitting this undefeated Jew against the best Nazi players. Meissner finds Emil Clément, the Watchmaker, and a curious relationship arises between them. As more and more games are played, the stakes rise, and the two men find their fates deeply entwined.
Twenty years later, the two meet again in Amsterdam—Meissner has become a bishop, and Emil is playing in an international chess tournament. Having lost his family in the horrors of the death camps, Emil wants nothing to do with the ex-Nazi officer despite their history, but Meissner is persistent. "What I hope," he tells Emil, "is that I can help you to understand that the power of forgiveness will bring healing." As both men search for a modicum of peace, they recall a gripping tale of survival and trust.
A suspenseful meditation on understanding and guilt, John Donoghue's The Death's Head Chess Club is a bold debut and a rich portrait of a surprising friendship.
















[book] THE DORTO EFFECT
The Surprising New Truth
About Food and Flavor
by Mark Schatzker
MAY 2015
Simon & Schuster
In The Dorito Effect, Mark Schatzker shows us how our approach to the nation’s number one public health crisis has gotten it wrong. The epidemics of obesity, heart disease, and diabetes are not tied to the overabundance of fat or carbs or any other specific nutrient. Instead, we have been led astray by the growing divide between flavor—the tastes we crave—and the underlying nutrition.
Since the late 1940s, we have been slowly leeching flavor out of the food we grow. Those perfectly round, red tomatoes that grace our supermarket aisles today are mostly water, and the big breasted chickens on our dinner plates grow three times faster than they used to, leaving them dry and tasteless. Simultaneously, we have taken great leaps forward in technology, allowing us to produce in the lab the very flavors that are being lost on the farm. Thanks to this largely invisible epidemic, seemingly healthy food is becoming more like junk food: highly craveable but nutritionally empty. We have unknowingly interfered with an ancient chemical language—flavor—that evolved to guide our nutrition, not destroy it.
With in-depth historical and scientific research, The Dorito Effect casts the food crisis in a fascinating new light, weaving an enthralling tale of how we got to this point and where we are headed. We’ve been telling ourselves that our addiction to flavor is the problem, but it is actually the solution. We are on the cusp of a new revolution in agriculture that will allow us to eat healthier and live longer by enjoying flavor the way nature intended.
















[book] How to Bake Pi:
An Edible Exploration of the
Mathematics of Mathematics
by Eugenia Cheng
MAY 5, 2015
Basic Books
What is math? How exactly does it work? And what do three siblings trying to share a cake have to do with it? In How to Bake Pi, math professor Eugenia Cheng provides an accessible introduction to the logic and beauty of mathematics, powered, unexpectedly, by insights from the kitchen: we learn, for example, how the béchamel in a lasagna can be a lot like the number 5, and why making a good custard proves that math is easy but life is hard. Of course, it’s not all about cooking; we’ll also run the New York and Chicago marathons, take a closer look at St. Paul’s Cathedral, pay visits to Cinderella and Lewis Carroll, and even get to the bottom of why we think of a tomato as a vegetable. At the heart of it all is Cheng’s work on category theory, a cutting-edge “mathematics of mathematics,” that is about figuring out how math works. This is not the math of our high school classes: seen through category theory, mathematics becomes less about numbers and formulas and more about how we know, believe, and understand anything, including whether our brother took too much cake.
Many of us think that math is hard, but, as Cheng makes clear, math is actually designed to make difficult things easier. Combined with her infectious enthusiasm for cooking and a true zest for life, Cheng’s perspective on math becomes this singular book: a funny, lively, and clear journey through a vast territory no popular book on math has explored before. How to Bake Pi offers a whole new way to think about a field all of us think we know; it will both dazzle the constant reader of popular mathematics and amuse and enlighten even the most hardened math-phobe.
So, what is math? Let’s look for the answer in the kitchen.















[book] Team of Teams
New Rules of Engagement for
a Complex World
Training the Leviathan to Improvise
by General Stanley McChrystal
Chris Fussell, Tantum (Teddy) Collins
And David Silverman
MAY 2015
Portfolio
The retired four-star general and author of My Share of the Task shares a powerful new leadership model. He is currently at Yale, and he also leads the McChrystal Group with his co-authors
As commander of Joint Special Operations Command (JSOC), General Stanley McChrystal played a crucial role in the War on Terror. But when he took the helm in 2004, America was losing that war badly: despite vastly inferior resources and technology, Al Qaeda was outmaneuvering America’s most elite warriors.

McChrystal writes that he came to realize that today’s faster, more interdependent world had overwhelmed the conventional, top-down hierarchy of the US military.
Al Qaeda had seen the future: a decentralized network that could move quickly and strike ruthlessly. To defeat it, JSOC needed to pivot from a pursuit of mechanical efficiency to organic adaptability. Under McChrystal’s leadership, JSOC remade itself, in the midst of a grueling war, into something entirely new: a network that combined robust centralized communication with decentralized managerial authority. As a result, they beat back Al Qaeda.
In this book, McChrystal shows not only how the military made that transition, but also how similar shifts are possible in all organizations, from large companies to startups to NGO/JCC/charities to governments.
The best organizations think and act like a team of teams, embracing small groups that combine the freedom to experiment with a relentless drive to share what they’ve learned. Drawing on a wealth of evidence from his military career, the private sector, and sources as diverse as hospital emergency rooms and NASA’s space program, McChrystal frames the existential challenge facing today’s organizations, and presents a compelling, effective solution.

Here former Navy Seal David Silverman (CEO of the McChrystal Group and co-author, talks about leadership:

David Silverman - Leadership Lessons from Battlefield to Boardroom from Expion on Vimeo.






















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