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Melvyn

Roseland, New Jersey, United States | Member Since 2009

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HELPFUL VOTES
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  • 524 titles in library
  • 33 purchased in 2014
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  • My Promised Land: The Triumph and Tragedy of Israel

    • UNABRIDGED (20 hrs and 45 mins)
    • By Ari Shavit
    • Narrated By Paul Boehmer
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (255)
    Performance
    (221)
    Story
    (227)

    Not since Thomas L. Friedman's groundbreaking From Beirut to Jerusalem has a book captured the essence and the beating heart of the Middle East as keenly and dynamically as My Promised Land. Facing unprecedented internal and external pressures, Israel today is at a moment of existential crisis. Ari Shavit draws on interviews, historical documents, private diaries, and letters, as well as his own family's story, illuminating the pivotal moments of the Zionist century to tell a riveting narrative that is larger than the sum of its parts.

    Chaim says: "Important book; unfortunate narration"
    "A compelling and revelatory history."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    What did you love best about My Promised Land?

    The author has captured the emotions and conflicting moral ambiguities of nation building on land occupied by others. He covers with frankness the settlers' harsh treatment of the indigenous Arab population. In addition to telling the story of the early Jewish settlers, the author examines Israel's decision to build an atomic capacity and its short and long-term consequences. When he interviews some of the early participants in the program, he attempts to parse what is real from what is rationalization. I found the book neither anti nor pro either Israel or the Arabs. One gets the sense that he wanted write an honest history, if there can be such a genre about this area of the world. However well informed one might be about early and present day Israel, this book is highly revelatory.


    What does Paul Boehmer bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    Paul Boehmer's reading is superb. He reads with immediacy and emotion that makes you believe you are present when the events he is describing are taking place. He also captures both the author's moral outrage yet sense of resignation at certain of the Israelis' less attractive conduct toward the Arabs.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    The human body is not equipped for such a task.


    2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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