by Yamin Levy
Hamas militants have abducted Lior Samet, the grandson of Israeli national war hero Brigadier General Avigdor Cohen, but the Israeli government does not negotiate with terrorists. Cohen’s inner world is turned upside down as he does what he must to bring Lior home.
Less than forty miles away, but more than two millennia earlier, Alexander the Great descends upon Jerusalem, ready to attack, but after a highly charged confrontation with Simon the High Priest, he spares the town. As the controversial story unfolds, the Maccabees, priestly militant warriors, are raised to fight off the Greek imperialists.
Yamin Levy’s ambitious debut novel explores the inner-world of warriors, reluctant soldiers, zealots, and freedom fighters. The parallel storylines describe both the early origins and modern versions of Israeli nationalism and military zeal and how the Kohen clan has left its mark on the spiritual landscape of the Jewish psyche and on the battlefield. Levy gives voice to a range of perspectives associated with the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and with Israeli society’s evolving attitudes regarding their physical, spiritual and existential survival.