3 out of 4 stars
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The title of the book is Andalusian In Jerusalem. The author is Mois Benarroch. The English version was translated from Spanish by Enriqueta Carrington. The book has one hundred and seventy standard pages hence is not very big. The genre of the book is fiction. Mois Benarroch is hailed as one of the leading Israeli poets and the author has written several other books which are available on Amazon.
In this book, Andalusian In Jerusalem, a teenager tells his closest friend that he is a Jew. This was supposed to be a new revelation to his friend. Shockingly, the friend replies that he knew it and before long, everybody in school knew that the teenager, the main character in the book, was a Jew. Later, this teenager writes a book and it is published. This book is also translated into six languages. He is invited to the Writers' Festival in Jerusalem after the publication of his book, ‘The Birthday Thief’. The rest of the story is actually set in Jerusalem.
The book is written in the first person point of view and hence we are able to experience everything that the main character passes through. The language used is simple and easy to understand. The characters are well developed and are few hence it is possible to get the flow of the story easily. The book also has many unexpected twists of events and it is almost impossible to tell what will happen next. This is another strength as it gives no place for the reader to preempt anything before reading.
However, I felt that the plot is not well developed. This is made worse by the fact that there is no logical flow of events. There is a lot of jumping back and forth in time also. Another limitation of the book is that it is written in prose form. The failure to organize the book into chapters may not be a big problem but I believe that it would be an added advantage for the reader. This is because one can easily relate the events in a specific chapter. The manuscript within the book is also quite long. The lengthy manuscript appears like another story within the main story. The interesting thing about the manuscript is that it is full of lively dialogues and poems.
I rate this book 3 out of 4 stars. This is because it lacks a good plot. The other reason is that there are a couple of cliffhangers that I felt are unnecessary. For example, the author is kidnapped. He is told to publish an article on ‘Water memory’ but we never get to hear about this. Another thing is the abrupt ending of the book and we never get to know exactly if the woman the author met was his mother or not. I recommend this book to lovers of fiction who are above fifteen-years-old and are capable of reading a book that is not action-packed.
Andalusian in Jerusalem
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