West Jerusalem Noir
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About the Author
Maayan Eitan's short fiction and essays have been published in the Kenyon Review, World Literature Today, and the Tel Aviv Review of Books; her work also appears regularly in Israeli literary magazines. She holds a master's degree in comparative literature from the University of Michigan and is currently pursuing a PhD in Hebrew literature in Israel. Love, her debut novel, was published in Israel in 2020; the English translation was published in the US in 2022 by Penguin Press.
These two var-ied col-lec-tions of sto-ries, pub-lished simul-ta-ne-ous-ly, are set in a kalei-do-scop-ic Jerusalem that is impos-si-ble to describe with a sin-gle voice. Both vol-umes attempt to ren-der one of the world's old-est, blood-i-est, holi-est, and most divid-ed cities . . . The sto-ries in West Jerusalem Noir vary wide-ly in scope . . . unlike the East edi-tion, some of the sto-ries in West use Israel's cap-i-tal and the region's strife as a back-drop rather than a fore-ground . . . It might be said that any sto-ry set in a city so steeped in vio-lent his-to-ry, so scrawled with reli-gious myth, and so flood-lit by divi-sive order is a sto-ry about search-ing, about dark-ness, and about moral qualms?--?is, in oth-er words, a noir.-- "Jewish Book Council"
[Of] the West Jerusalem stories . . . The best is Bernstein's Kafkaesque tale of hiding one's head to avoid noticing the violence that's happening all around . . . VERDICT: Rather than collections of crime noir, these are deep dives into the anguished psyche of a grievously divided city.-- "Library Journal"
Fifteen tales that capture the magic and mystery of everyday life in West Jerusalem, which has been the main area of Jewish population from the time of Israeli independence in 1948 . . . Whether these stories are peopled by soldiers, students, children, and parents, they keep asking, 'Who belongs in Jerusalem?' and its corollary, 'Who does Jerusalem belong to?'--the central questions of this volume, which handles them with heartfelt sensitivity. Pushes the boundaries of noir in a welcome new direction.-- "Kirkus Reviews"