This is an unusual and compelling work of fiction. It takes you up the floors of an Israeli apartment building and into the lives of three people…into their minds as they narrate to a friend, an answering machine, and themselves. I felt the drama of events and emotions in every page and read the wonderful language with entwined pleasure and dread.— Brant
Set in an upper-middle-class Tel Aviv apartment building, this best-selling and warmly acclaimed Israeli novel examines the interconnected lives of its residents, whose turmoils, secrets, unreliable confessions, and problematic decisions reveal a society in the midst of an identity crisis. On the first floor, Arnon, a tormented retired officer who fought in the First Intifada, confesses to an army friend with a troubled military past how his obsession about his young daughter's safety led him to lose control and put his marriage in peril. Above Arnon lives Hani, known as "the widow," whose husband travels the world for his lucrative job while she stays at home with their two children, increasingly isolated and unstable. When her brother-in-law suddenly appears at their door begging her to hide him from loan sharks and the police, she agrees in spite of the risk to her family, if only to bring some emotional excitement into her life. On the top floor lives a former judge, Devora. Eager to start a new life in her retirement, Devora joins a social movement, desperately tries to reconnect with her estranged son, and falls in love with a man who isn't what he seems. A brilliant novelist, Eshkol Nevo vividly depicts how the grinding effects of social and political ills play out in the psyche of his flawed yet compelling characters, in often unexpected and explosive ways.
About the Author
Born in Jerusalem in 1971, Eshkol Nevo studied copywriting at the Tirza Granot School and psychology at Tel Aviv University. Today, Nevo owns and co-manages the largest private creative writing school in Israel and is considered the mentor of many upcoming young Israeli writers. His novels have all been top bestsellers in Israel. His novel Homesick (Chatto & Windus, 2008) was a finalist for the prestigious Independent Foreign Fiction Prize, World Cup Wishes was a finalist for the Kritikerpreis der Jury der Jungen Kritiker (Austria, 2011), and Neuland was included in The Independent's list of Books of the Year in Translation (2014)