Pumpkinflowers

Pumpkinflowers
Author: Matti Friedman
Pages: 256
ISBN: 9781785900716
Available:
Release: 2016-05-03
Editor: Biteback Publishing
Language: en

Explanation of the Book:

It was just one remote hilltop in an unnamed war in the late 1990s, but it would send out ripples that are still felt today, foreshadowing the chaos of 21st-century conflicts in the Middle East. The hill, in Lebanon, was called the Pumpkin; ‘flowers’ was the military code word for casualties. Part memoir, part reportage and part haunting elegy for lost youth, award-winning writer Matti Friedman’s powerful account follows the band of young soldiers - the author among them - conscripted out of high school into holding this remote outpost, and explores how the task would change them forever. Pumpkinflowers is a lyrical yet devastating insight into the day-today realities of war, and a powerful coming-of-age narrative. Raw and beautifully rendered, this essential chronicle casts an unflinching look at the nature of modern warfare, in which there is never a clear victor and innocence is not all that is lost.

Pumpkinflowers

Pumpkinflowers
Author: Matti Friedman
Pages: 256
ISBN: 9781616206086
Available:
Release: 2016-05-03
Editor: Algonquin Books
Language: en

Explanation of the Book:

“A book about young men transformed by war, written by a veteran whose dazzling literary gifts gripped my attention from the first page to the last.” —The Wall Street Journal “Friedman’s sober and striking new memoir . . . [is] on a par with Tim O’Brien’s The Things They Carried -- its Israeli analog.” —The New York Times Book Review It was just one small hilltop in a small, unnamed war in the late 1990s, but it would send out ripples that are still felt worldwide today. The hill, in Lebanon, was called the Pumpkin; flowers was the military code word for “casualties.” Award-winning writer Matti Friedman re-creates the harrowing experience of a band of young Israeli soldiers charged with holding this remote outpost, a task that would change them forever, wound the country in ways large and small, and foreshadow the unwinnable conflicts the United States would soon confront in Afghanistan, Iraq, and elsewhere. Pumpkinflowers is a reckoning by one of those young soldiers now grown into a remarkable writer. Part memoir, part reportage, part history, Friedman’s powerful narrative captures the birth of today’s chaotic Middle East and the rise of a twenty-first-century type of war in which there is never a clear victor and media images can be as important as the battle itself. Raw and beautifully rendered, Pumpkinflowers will take its place among classic war narratives by George Orwell, Philip Caputo, and Tim O’Brien. It is an unflinching look at the way we conduct war today.

Pumpkinflowers

Pumpkinflowers
Author: Matti Friedman
Pages: 256
ISBN: 9780771036910
Available:
Release: 2016-05-03
Editor: Signal
Language: en

Explanation of the Book:

Shortlisted for the 2016 Hilary Weston Writer's Trust Non-Fiction Prize Shortlisted for the 2017 RBC Taylor Prize for Literary Non-Fiction Longlisted for the 2017 BC National Award for Canadian Non-Fiction Shortlisted for the 2017 Vine Awards for Canadian Jewish Literature A New York Times Notable Book of 2016 A Globe and Mail Pick for Best Canadian Non-Fiction of 2016 From an award-winning Canadian-Israeli writer comes the true story of a band of young soldiers, the author among them, charged with holding one remote outpost in Lebanon, a task that changed them forever and foreshadowed today's unwinnable conflicts in Iraq, Afghanistan, and elsewhere. It was small hilltop in a small, unnamed war in the late 1990s, but it would send out ripples that continue to emanate worldwide today. The hill was called the Pumpkin; flowers was the military code word for "casualties." Friedman's visceral narrative recreates harrowing wartime experiences in a work that is part frontlines memoir, part journalistic reporting, part military history. The years in question were pivotal ones, and not just for Israel. They saw the perfection of a type of warfare that would eventually be exported to Afghanistan and Iraq. The new twenty-first century war is one in which there is never any clear victor, and not enough lives are lost to rally the public against it. Eventually Israel would come to realize that theirs was a losing proposition and pull out. But, of course, by then these soldiers--those who had survived--and the country had been wounded in ways large and small. Raw, powerful, beautifully rendered, the book will take its place among classic war stories such as those by George Orwell, Philip Caputo, and Vasily Grossman. Pumpkinflowers is an unflinching look, like the works of Jon Krakauer and Sebastian Junger, at the way we conduct war today.

Pumpkinflowers

Pumpkinflowers
Author: Matti Friedman
Pages: 242
ISBN: 1785900781
Available:
Release: 2016-06
Editor: Unknown
Language: en

Explanation of the Book:

It was one small hilltop in a small, unnamed war in the late 1990s, but it would send out ripples still felt worldwide today. The hill, in Lebanon, was called the Pumpkin; 'flowers' was the military code word for casualties. Award-winning writer Matti Friedman re-creates the harrowing, otherworldly experiences of a band of young men, plucked by conscription from westernised boyhoods, and charged with holding this remote outpost - a pointless task that changed them forever and foreshadowed the unwinnable conflicts the United States would soon confront in Iraq, Afghanistan and elsewhere. Part memoir, part reportage, part elegy for lost youth, this powerful narrative captures the birth of today's chaotic Middle East and the rise of a 21st century type of war in which there is never a clear victor, and innocence is not the only casualty. Raw and beautifully rendered, Pumpkin flowers will take its place among classic war narratives by George Orwell, Philip Caputo, Vasily Grossman and Micahel Herr. It is an unflinching look at the way we conduct war today 'Throughout, the author grapples with questions regarding both Israeli aggression and the nature of the state's survival. In a chilling final section, he chronicles his travels as a Canadian tourist to his former combat zone in Lebanon, encountering friendly residents in thrall to Hezbollah and seething with anti-Semitism. A haunting yet wry tale of young people at war, cursed by political forces beyond their control, that can stand alongside the best narrative nonfiction coming out of Afghanistan and Iraq.' Kirkus Review 'Pumpkinflowers is a beautifully written insight into the day-to-day realities of what it's like being a soldier and the often boring reality of war. No former soldier who has spent hours manning guard-posts during his military service could remain indifferent to such lines as "sometimes you took over one of the guard-posts, checked your watch an hour later, and found that five minutes had passed". Friedman's book is... a powerful portrait of men in war.' - Ahron Bregman. Read the full review in the Jewish Chronicle

Spies of No Country

Spies of No Country
Author: Matti Friedman
Pages: 272
ISBN: 9781616209414
Available:
Release: 2019-03-05
Editor: Algonquin Books
Language: en

Explanation of the Book:

“Wondrous . . . Compelling . . . Piercing.” —The New York Times Book Review Award-winning writer Matti Friedman’s tale of Israel’s first spies has all the tropes of an espionage novel, including duplicity, betrayal, disguise, clandestine meetings, the bluff, and the double bluff—but it’s all true. Journalist and award-winning author Matti Friedman’s tale of Israel’s first spies reads like an espionage novel--but it’s all true. The four agents at the center of this story were part of a ragtag unit known as the Arab Section, conceived during World War II by British spies and Jewish militia leaders in Palestine. Intended to gather intelligence and carry out sabotage operations, the unit consisted of Jews who were native to the Arab world and could thus easily assume Arab identities. In 1948, with Israel’s existence hanging in the balance, these men went undercover in Beirut, where they spent the next two years operating out of a newsstand, collecting intelligence and sending messages back to Israel via a radio whose antenna was disguised as a clothesline. Of the dozen spies in the Arab Section at the war’s outbreak, five were caught and executed. But in the end, the Arab Section would emerge as the nucleus of the Mossad, Israel’s vaunted intelligence agency. Spies of No Country is about the slippery identities of these young spies, but it’s also about the complicated identity of Israel, a country that presents itself as Western but in fact has more citizens with Middle Eastern roots and traditions, like the spies of this narrative. Meticulously researched and masterfully told, Spies of No Country is an eye-opening look at the paradoxes of the Middle East.

The Aleppo Codex

The Aleppo Codex
Author: Matti Friedman
Pages: 320
ISBN: 9781616202781
Available:
Release: 2013-05-14
Editor: Algonquin Books
Language: en

Explanation of the Book:

Winner of the 2014 Sami Rohr Prize for Jewish Literature A thousand years ago, the most perfect copy of the Hebrew Bible was written. It was kept safe through one upheaval after another in the Middle East, and by the 1940s it was housed in a dark grotto in Aleppo, Syria, and had become known around the world as the Aleppo Codex. Journalist Matti Friedman’s true-life detective story traces how this precious manuscript was smuggled from its hiding place in Syria into the newly founded state of Israel and how and why many of its most sacred and valuable pages went missing. It’s a tale that involves grizzled secret agents, pious clergymen, shrewd antiquities collectors, and highly placed national figures who, as it turns out, would do anything to get their hands on an ancient, decaying book. What it reveals are uncomfortable truths about greed, state cover-ups, and the fascinating role of historical treasures in creating a national identity.

The Balfour Declaration

The Balfour Declaration
Author: Jonathan Schneer
Pages: 432
ISBN: 9781408809709
Available:
Release: 2011-08-01
Editor: A&C Black
Language: en

Explanation of the Book:

In the middle of the First World War, the British War Cabinet approved and issued a statement in the form of a letter that encouraged the settlement of the Jewish people in Palestine. Signed by the Foreign Secretary Arthur Balfour, the Balfour Declaration remains one of the most important documents of the last hundred years. Jonathan Schneer explores the story behind the declaration and its unforeseen consequences that have shaped the modern world, placing it in context paying attention to the fascinating characters who conceived, opposed and plotted around it - among them Lloyd George, Lord Rothschild, T.E. Lawrence, Prince Faisal and Aubrey Herbert (the man who was 'Greenmantle'). The Balfour Declaration brings vividly to life the origins of one of the world's longest lasting and most damaging conflicts.

The Aleppo Codex

The Aleppo Codex
Author: Matti Friedman
Pages: 320
ISBN: 9781616202705
Available:
Release: 2013-05-14
Editor: Algonquin Books
Language: en

Explanation of the Book:

Winner of the 2014 Sami Rohr Prize for Jewish Literature A thousand years ago, the most perfect copy of the Hebrew Bible was written. It was kept safe through one upheaval after another in the Middle East, and by the 1940s it was housed in a dark grotto in Aleppo, Syria, and had become known around the world as the Aleppo Codex. Journalist Matti Friedman’s true-life detective story traces how this precious manuscript was smuggled from its hiding place in Syria into the newly founded state of Israel and how and why many of its most sacred and valuable pages went missing. It’s a tale that involves grizzled secret agents, pious clergymen, shrewd antiquities collectors, and highly placed national figures who, as it turns out, would do anything to get their hands on an ancient, decaying book. What it reveals are uncomfortable truths about greed, state cover-ups, and the fascinating role of historical treasures in creating a national identity.

The Tree of Life and Prosperity

The Tree of Life and Prosperity
Author: Michael A. Eisenberg
Pages: 352
ISBN: 9781637580714
Available:
Release: 2021-08-24
Editor: Simon and Schuster
Language: en

Explanation of the Book:

One of Israel’s most successful venture capitalists uses the words and actions of the Hebrew patriarchs to lay the foundations for a modern growth economy based on timeless business principles and values. Entrepreneurs, businessmen, and investors are constantly looking for principles and rules that will pave the way for success. Usually, those at the forefront are successful entrepreneurs from Silicon Valley or legendary Wall Street investors. But the principles of economic growth, wealth creation and preservation were written long before the rise of the modern market economy and its heroes. Michael Eisenberg—one of the most successful venture capitalists in Israel, and one of the first investors in Lemonade, and Wix—reveals in The Tree of Life and Prosperity the eternal principles for successful business, economics, and negotiation hidden in the Torah—and shows their relevance to the modern world we live in.

Out Standing in the Field

Out Standing in the Field
Author: Sandra Perron
Pages: 336
ISBN: 9781770864955
Available:
Release: 2017-04-06
Editor: Cormorant Books
Language: en

Explanation of the Book:

Some books are catalysts. Shake Hands with the Devil was one. For 2017, that book is Out Standing in the Field. In her memoir, Sandra Perron describes her experience of the Canadian Military - one of the most important institutions of our nation. What she has to say is exactly what the top brass has been paying lip-service to for years, and doing nothing to improve. In 2016, the Auditor General's Report noted that the military had no strategy to recruit women, even though they are required to meet a target that 25% of the uniformed personnel be women. According to Statistics Canada, 1,000 members of our military say they have been sexually assaulted in the past year. In her revealing and moving memoir, Sandra Perron, Canada's first female infantry officer and a member of the Royal 22e Régiment - the legendary "Van Doos" - describes her fight against a system of institutional sexism. Though repeatedly identified as top of her class throughout her training, she was subject to harassment by her male colleagues. Her military experience, however, wasn't all negative. Through two deployments to Bosnia and Croatia, Perron forged lasting friendships with men and women, serving her country with courage and compassion, and her determination helped pave the way for women's inclusion in the Armed Forces. Out Standing in the Field is the story of a soldier who refused to let her comrades or her country down, even while serving a military institution that failed her repeatedly. Beautifully written, Perron's memoir is a testament to her fortitude and patriotism, and serves as proof that the spirit of a true hero cannot be bent or broken.

Arab and Jew

Arab and Jew
Author: David K. Shipler
Pages: 735
ISBN: 9780553447514
Available:
Release: 2015
Editor: Crown Publishing Group (NY)
Language: en

Explanation of the Book:

The expanded and updated edition of David Shipler's Pulitzer Prize-winning book that examines the relationship, past and present, between Arabs and Jews In this monumental work, extensively researched and more relevant than ever, David Shipler delves into the origins of the prejudices that exist between Jews and Arabs that have been intensified by war, terrorism, and nationalism. Focusing on the diverse cultures that exist side by side in Israel and Israeli-controlled territories, Shipler examines the process of indoctrination that begins in schools; he discusses the far-ranging effects of socioeconomic differences, historical conflicts between Islam and Judaism, attitudes about the Holocaust, and much more. And he writes of the people: the Arab woman in love with a Jew, the retired Israeli military officer, the Palestinian guerrilla, the handsome actor whose father is Arab and whose mother is Jewish. For Shipler, and for all who read this book, their stories and hundreds of others reflect not only the reality of wounded spirits but also a glimmer of hope for eventual coexistence in the Promised Land.

The Play of Daniel Keyes Flowers for Algernon

The Play of Daniel Keyes  Flowers for Algernon
Author: Bert Coules
Pages: 90
ISBN: 0435232932
Available:
Release: 1993
Editor: Heinemann
Language: en

Explanation of the Book:

The Heinemann Plays series offers contemporary drama and classic plays in durable classroom editions. Many have large casts and an equal mix of boy and girl parts. This play is a dramatization of Daniel Keyes's story about a retarded adult who desperately wants to be able to read and write.

The Drone Eats with Me

The Drone Eats with Me
Author: Atef Abu Saif
Pages: 264
ISBN: 9780807049112
Available:
Release: 2016-07-05
Editor: Beacon Press
Language: en

Explanation of the Book:

An ordinary Gazan’s chronicle of the struggle to survive during Israel’s 2014 invasion of Gaza The Drone Eats with Me is an unforgettable rendering of everyday civilian life shattered by the realities of twenty-first-century warfare. Israel’s 2014 invasion of Gaza lasted 51 days, killed 2,145 Palestinians (578 of them children), injured over 11,000 people, and demolished more than 17,000 homes. Atef Abu Saif, a young father and novelist, puts an indelibly human face on these statistics, providing a rare window into the texture of a community and the realities of a conflict that is too often obscured by politics. From the Trade Paperback edition.

A Coup in Turkey

A Coup in Turkey
Author: Jeremy Seal
Pages: 352
ISBN: 9781473548305
Available:
Release: 2021-02-04
Editor: Random House
Language: en

Explanation of the Book:

The most dramatic, revealing and little-known story in Turkey's history - which illuminates the nation 'Through the spellbinding career of a single, ill-fated leader, Jeremy Seal illuminates a bitterly divided country' Colin Thubron 'Read this book if you're interested in Turkey. Read it if you're interested in power, hubris and redemption. Read it' Christopher de Bellaigue, author of The Islamic Enlightenment In the spring of 2016 travel writer Jeremy Seal went to Turkey to investigate perhaps the most dramatic, revealing and little-known episode in the country's history - the 'original' coup of 1960, which deposed the traditionalist Prime Minister Adnan Menderes. The story of Menderes - to his adoring supporters the country's founding democrat; to his sworn enemies its most infamous traitor - goes to the heart of the feud that continues to rage between the Western and secular ambitions of a minority elite and the religious and conservative instincts of the small-town majority. A Coup in Turkey is a thrilling account of the events leading up to the coup and the trials and executions that followed, a story of political subterfuge and score-settling, courtroom drama, state execution, authoritarian intolerance and ideological division. Seal travels through President Erdogan's Turkey, tracking down eye-witness accounts from survivors of the Menderes era in Istanbul, the historic metropolis, and the new capital at Ankara. As he expertly guides us through this extraordinary story, so the compelling parallels between past and present become strikingly clear, and he illuminates this troubled nation with a deep sympathy and love for the people and places he writes about. By focussing on one key event - one which many Turks regard with shame - this evocative, gripping portrait of Turkey recentres our understanding of the past and makes sense of one of Europe's most bewildering yet intriguing neighbours. 'A wonderful writer' Robert Macfarlane

The Good Spy

The Good Spy
Author: Kai Bird
Pages: 448
ISBN: 9780307889775
Available:
Release: 2014-05-20
Editor: Crown
Language: en

Explanation of the Book:

The Good Spy is Pulitzer Prize-winning biographer Kai Bird’s compelling portrait of the remarkable life and death of one of the most important operatives in CIA history – a man who, had he lived, might have helped heal the rift between Arabs and the West. On April 18, 1983, a bomb exploded outside the American Embassy in Beirut, killing 63 people. The attack was a geopolitical turning point. It marked the beginning of Hezbollah as a political force, but even more important, it eliminated America’s most influential and effective intelligence officer in the Middle East – CIA operative Robert Ames. What set Ames apart from his peers was his extraordinary ability to form deep, meaningful connections with key Arab intelligence figures. Some operatives relied on threats and subterfuge, but Ames worked by building friendships and emphasizing shared values – never more notably than with Yasir Arafat’s charismatic intelligence chief and heir apparent Ali Hassan Salameh (aka “The Red Prince”). Ames’ deepening relationship with Salameh held the potential for a lasting peace. Within a few years, though, both men were killed by assassins, and America’s relations with the Arab world began heading down a path that culminated in 9/11, the War on Terror, and the current fog of mistrust. Bird, who as a child lived in the Beirut Embassy and knew Ames as a neighbor when he was twelve years old, spent years researching The Good Spy. Not only does the book draw on hours of interviews with Ames’ widow, and quotes from hundreds of Ames’ private letters, it’s woven from interviews with scores of current and former American, Israeli, and Palestinian intelligence officers as well as other players in the Middle East “Great Game.” What emerges is a masterpiece-level narrative of the making of a CIA officer, a uniquely insightful history of twentieth-century conflict in the Middle East, and an absorbing hour-by-hour account of the Beirut Embassy bombing. Even more impressive, Bird draws on his reporter’s skills to deliver a full dossier on the bombers and expose the shocking truth of where the attack’s mastermind resides today.

Beyond the Instant

Beyond the Instant
Author: Mark Wildes
Pages: 192
ISBN: 9781510731868
Available:
Release: 2018-09-04
Editor: Simon and Schuster
Language: en

Explanation of the Book:

More than ever, young people today are searching for a sense of purpose and direction. Advances in science and technology have given our generation opportunities our grandparents could only dream of, yet our need for meaning and values is more unfulfilled than ever. Growing addiction to instant gratification and attachment to circumstantial highs leave us lacking when it comes to long-term contentment. Beyond the Instant shows young adults how to enrich their lives through faith. It examines ten different areas of contemporary life, including friendship, family, dating, money, and career, to demonstrate how a return to spirituality can help people find happiness and satisfaction. It addresses many important questions along the way: What is the true role of sex in relationships? What is the significance of failure? How can people really make a difference in the world? In the book, Rabbi Mark Wildes draws upon Jewish tradition and wisdom to bring a sense of balance, stability, and purpose to the often frenzied and occasionally directionless twenty-first-century way of life. Each chapter examines what the Torah has to say about a particular concern of modern life and then shows how thousands of years of rabbinical teachings can be applied to the contemporary situation. Written in a relatable and engaging style, it shows how faith and religion can provide a practical guide to finding happiness that goes beyond the instant.

Eagle Down

Eagle Down
Author: Jessica Donati
Pages: 320
ISBN: 9781541762572
Available:
Release: 2021-01-19
Editor: Hachette UK
Language: en

Explanation of the Book:

A Wall Street Journal national security reporter takes readers into the lives of U.S. Special Forces on the front lines against the Taliban and Islamic State, where a new and covert war is keeping Afghanistan from collapse. “Powerful, important, and searing." —General David Petraeus, U.S. Army (ret.), former commander, U.S. Central Command, former CIA director In 2015, the White House claimed triumphantly that “the longest war in American history” was over. But for some, it was just the beginning of a new war, fought by Special Operations Forces, with limited resources, little governmental oversight, and contradictory orders. With big picture insight and on-the-ground grit, Jessica Donati shares the stories of the impossible choices these soldiers must make. After the fall of a major city to the Taliban that year, Hutch, a battle-worn Green Beret on his fifth combat tour was ordered on a secret mission to recapture it and inadvertently called in an airstrike on a Doctors Without Borders hospital, killing dozens. Caleb stepped on a bomb during a mission in notorious Sangin. Andy was trapped with his team during a raid with a crashed Black Hawk and no air support. Through successive policy directives under the Obama and Trump administrations, America has come to rely almost entirely on US Special Forces, and without a long-term plan, is failing to stabilize Afghanistan, undermining US interests both at home and abroad. Eagle Down is a riveting account of the heroism, sacrifice, and tragedy experienced by those that continue to fight America’s longest war.

WeAreArrested

 WeAreArrested
Author: Can Dündar
Pages: 64
ISBN: 9781786829030
Available:
Release: 2019-11-13
Editor: Bloomsbury Publishing
Language: en

Explanation of the Book:

When a journalist is sent a flash-drive containing critical evidence of illegal government activity, he is duty-bound to publish the story. But with the nation destabilised and divided, a sinister power is eroding the rule of law. What price will he pay for speaking out? #WeAreArrested

Killing from the Inside Out

Killing from the Inside Out
Author: Robert Emmet Meagher
Pages: 190
ISBN: 9781630874520
Available:
Release: 2014-09-15
Editor: Wipf and Stock Publishers
Language: en

Explanation of the Book:

Armies know all about killing. It is what they do, and ours does it more effectively than most. We are painfully coming to realize, however, that we are also especially good at killing our own "from the inside out," silently, invisibly. In every major war since Korea, more of our veterans have taken their lives than have lost them in combat. The latest research, rooted in veteran testimony, reveals that the most severe and intractable PTSD--fraught with shame, despair, and suicide--stems from "moral injury." But how can there be rampant moral injury in what our military, our government, our churches, and most everyone else call just wars? At the root of our incomprehension lies just war theory--developed, expanded, and updated across the centuries to accommodate the evolution of warfare, its weaponry, its scale, and its victims. Any serious critique of war, as well any true attempt to understand the profound, invisible wounds it inflicts, will be undermined from the outset by the unthinking and all-but-universal acceptance of just war doctrine. Killing from the Inside Out radically questions that theory, examines its legacy, and challenges us to look beyond it, beyond just war.

The Snake Eaters

The Snake Eaters
Author: Owen West
Pages: 352
ISBN: 9781451655964
Available:
Release: 2013-05-14
Editor: Simon and Schuster
Language: en

Explanation of the Book:

Documents the achievements of a team of reservists and National Guardsmen who built an Iraqi battalion and fought side by side with the first Iraqi soldiers granted independent battle space. By the award-winning author of Sharkman Six. 50,000 first printing.