Check out these new books during Jewish Book Month

The Devil in Jerusalem
by Naomi Ragen
St. Martin’s Press, 2015, Hardcover, 310 pages, $29.99.

When two children are brought into Hadassah Hospital with shocking injuries, Detective Bina Tzedek is contacted.  The children’s mother, an ultra-orthodox American émigré refuses to answer questions. As Tzedek investigates, the disturbing story of how a charismatic and psychopathic cult leader has taken over people’s lives begins to unfold.

Written by the internationally best-selling author of nine novels including The Tenth Song, and based on a true story, The Devil in Jerusalem brings intrigue, intensity and betrayal into Ragen’s portrait of how predators can turn people seeking holiness into tragic victims.

Single Handed
by Daniel M. Cohen
Berkley Publishing Group, 2015, hardcover, 448 pages, $27.95.

When President George W. Bush presented the Medal of Honor to Tibor Rubin in 2005, the ceremony was long overdue.  The only Holocaust survivor to receive America’s highest military distinction, Tibor’s valor in battle and Chinese military camp prisoner experience qualified him for the medal in 1954, but the paperwork was never filed.

Filmmaker, journalist, and film critic Daniel M. Cohen’s riveting war memoir brings Rubin’s inspiring story to the public for the first time. Beginning with his early life in Hungary and years at the notorious Mauthausen concentration camp, Cohen show how inventiveness, bravery, and concern for others saved Rubin and the many others he helped.

The War Reporter
by Martin Fletcher

Thomas Dunne Books, 2015, Hardcover,  306 pages, $25.99.National Jewish Book Award winner and well-known TV news correspondent, Martin Fletcher’s new novel traces a journalist’s mission to document the atrocities of Bosnian war criminal Ratko Mladic. Protected by shadowy figures that have prevented his arrest for a decade, Mladic turns his henchmen full force on the journalist and the beautiful interpreter that he loves.

Drawing on his own experience as a war reporter in Bosnia and Sarajevo, Fletcher brings authentic and chilling realism to his novel. Called “An Engrossing if unsettling thriller … a page-turner” by Publishers Weekly,  The War Reporter depicts the life-and-death realities of war correspondents.

Killing a King: The Assassination of Yitzak Rabin and the Remaking of Israel
by Dan Ephron
W.W. Norton & Company, 2015, hardcover, 336 pages, $27.95.

A chilling reminder of how an assassin’s bullet can alter the course of history, Dan Ephron’s book documents the two years leading up to Yitzak Rabin’s assassination from the eyes of both Rabin and his killer, 25-year-old law student Yigal Amir.  It shows that while the world’s admiration of Rabin included a Nobel Peace Prize, his policies deepened the internal divide between left and right and galvanized Israel’s Jewish extremists.

The Days Between: Blessings, Poems, and Directions of the Heart for the Jewish High Holiday Season
by Marcia Falk
Brandeis University Press, 2014, Hardcover, 222 pages, $24.95.

An inspirational companion to traditional Jewish High Holiday prayers, poet Marcia Falk’s book recreates key prayers and rituals in moving and non-patriarchal language. Intended for Jews of all persuasions, this book may particularly appeal to non-Orthodox movements and unaffiliated Jews.

Days in the History of Silence
by Merethe Lindstrom
Other Press, 2011, paperback, 230 pages, $14.95.

Acclaimed Norwegian novelist Merethe Lindstrom’s new book shows how the repercussions of secrecy invade and sometimes overpower people’s lives.  The story of a Holocaust survivor, who hides his Jewish identity, and his wife, who gave her son away when she was 17, the book is “A quiet and unnerving masterpiece,” according to the Norway Times.

Reign of Terror: The Budapest Memoirs of Valdemar Langlet 1944-1945
by Valdemar Langlet 2015, Skyhorse
Publishing, paperback, 208 pages, $14.99.

Valdemar Langlet shares the trials, tribulations and challenges in opposing the Nazis. Valdemar issued Letters of Protection, passport-like documents with official-looking stamps that frequently saved Hungarian Jews from deportation to the death camps. As the Red Army approached, Langlet risked his life to shelter Jews and other refugees in safe houses throughout Budapest.

New books by local authors

Shakespeare’s Conspirator
by Steve Weitzenkorn, 477 pages, CreateSpace and Amazon Digital, 2015, , $18.95 paperback, $2.99 Kindle.

Shakespeare’s Conspirator: The Woman, The Writer, The Clues describes how a woman writes many Shakespearean plays – and how she embeds a web of clues in every script.
Set in 1587, the novel depicts Shakespeare as struggling to launch his career. Finally he persuades James Burbage, a theater owner, to stage “Henry VI.” Burbage is one of several proprietors who had refused to look at Amelia Bassano’s comedic script. Infuriated after being blocked at every turn, she reluctantly seals a secret pact with Shakespeare. So begins a fiery relationship that triggers suspicions, plots to expose them and grave dangers.

Craving recognition and ways to break through, Amelia pursues illicit relationships with Elizabethan luminaries while becoming a controversial advocate for women. Scandals and complications follow as her life takes dreadful turns. When Shakespeare pressures her to write a soul-tormenting script, she fears being exposed as a hidden Jew, a felony in Elizabethan England. Undeterred, she buries hints to her authorship and identity in Shakespeare’s plays. But not everyone is deceived. Everything comes to a head, and the dangers are never greater than on the day the Globe Theatre debuts.

Sammy’s Journey
by Sam Sterk, 326 pages, CreateSpace, 2013,  paeperback $15.62, Kindle $7.99

Sammy’s Journey tells the story about a young Israeli boy who after numerous yearly hospitalizations is accepted to the Jewish National Home for Asthmatic Children in Denver for a two-year cure. His plane journey will take him over 10, 000 miles away from his home in Israel. While placed in the Denver facility, he soon discovers that his troubled family life is a psychological trigger of his asthma. A psychologist helps sort out Sammy’s feelings of abandonment, rejection and parental neglect while helping Sammy develop improved coping skills.

To Tell Our Stories: Holocaust Survivors of Southern Arizona
by Raisa Moroz
CreateSpace, 2015, paperback, 206 pages, $18.

During World War II’s Nazi onslaught, 6 million Jews were systematically and brutally killed. Yet millions survived, their lives altered permanently by the terrors they faced. After the war, many left long-established homes to settle in Israel and the United States, hoping for renewal. Here are 36 stories of survivors who have made Southern Arizona their home. Each is an intimate slice of the Holocaust as it occurred throughout Europe and the Soviet Union. And each story is a dedication to loved ones and friends lost and brutalized during a portion of history that has since defined 20th century history and modern-day genocide.

The book is available in Tucson at Antigone Books, the Jewish History Museum, and the gift shops at Anshei Israel and Bet Shalom and globally on Proceeds from book sales support the Holocaust Survivors Program at Jewish Family & Children’s Services of Southern Arizona.

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