Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Archive for the ‘Religion & Culture’ Category

Living in Jerusalem, a city constantly overshadowed by random acts of terror, is a terrifying reality for Elise Margulies and her family.  Confined to bed with a difficult pregnancy, Elise waits for the return of her husband and young daughter from a ballet recital.  When told that their car was ambushed but that there was no trace of either her husband or her daughter, Elise’s life spins out of control.  The ensuing five day saga is told in the voices of those around her who desperately try to locate her family.  In parallel, the background story of a pact between Elise’s grandmother and three other women who survived the horrors of Auschwitz concentration camp, add a meaningful depth to this gripping, but at times, terrifying read.   A worthwhile read by International bestselling author Naomi Ragen.

Rating: *****
Theme Fiction:
Religion & Culture
Suitable:  Year 10-12+

Read Full Post »

Translated from French by Ian Monk and with a powerful introduction by Mark Baker, Haenel’s transcript about Jan Karski, a Polish Resistance Fighter in WWII, is told in a highly unusual manner.  Dived into three parts, Haenel recounts Karski’s testimony in Claude Lanzmann’s documentary Shoah in which the shattered figure presents his own eye witness testimony along with the details he was told to present to the British and US Governments.  The second chapter recounts experiences written by Karski himself in his biographical account of his experiences throughout the war, of his time incarcerated by the SS and his accounts to leaders of the British and US Governements, as well as the Polish Government in exile.   The third and final chapter is a fictional account of what Karski thought and what transpired after his meeting with President Roosevelt.   This third and final chapter in which fact and fiction are mixed – a rare and unlikely occurrence in the world of literature – has created much controversy.  In discussion with Mark Baker, Yannick Haenel’s presentation at Melbourne’s Wheeler Centre for Books Writing and Ideas will add much to your reading of this book.

Rating: ****
Theme:
Religion & Culture
Suitable: Yeara 10-12+

Read Full Post »

Ameera, born in Australia, is the daughter of a Muslim Pakistani father and a Christian Australian mother.   Brought up in the traditions of her father’s religion, Ameera accepts that an arranged marriage is to be her fate.  Travelling to Pakistan though, to attend the wedding of her cousin, Ameera finds that her world is not what she thought.  A well researched and well written novel by Rosanne Hawke which allows the reader a peek into the world of our Muslim friends.

Rating:  *****
Theme Fiction:
Person to Person; Religion and Culture
Suitable: Year 7-12

 

Read Full Post »

An interesting writing style pervades this lengthy novel by Maria Tumarkin.  It is a story of the author travelling with her Australian born daughter Billie back to her homeland in Russia and the Ukraine, a homeland from which she emigrated, with her parents and sister,  at the age of 15.  Intent on having Billie see and experience firsthand their shared heritage, Maria ponders the past, its changes and its loss.  This is a powerful story of sharing between mothers and daughters and the heritage that is passed, wittingly or unwittingly, from generation to generation.
Rating: ****
Theme Fiction:
Historical Fiction; Religion & Culture
Suitability: Year 11-12+

Read Full Post »