Also available as an ebook!
Seen through the eyes of an illiterate twelve-year-old boy, Nava Semel’s moving, at times lyrical fiction explores life in the Palestine of the 1930s – a world where a young Jew is prepared to undertake multiple marriages to threatened East European women for patriotic reasons alone; where a boy’s closest friends are a dog named after his hero Johnny Weissmuller (the screen Tarzan of blessed memory), his brother’s first wife, and the girl next door. Semel weaves a rich evocation of love and pain and promises, written with eloquent humanity and verve.
“Like in a movie, Nava Semel leads her characters, illuminating scene by scene the different destinies of both the Jewish village people and their Arab neighbors. She presents also the funny sides of the life of these two communities. A most moving and funny book. Silent sorrow goes through the text, hinting that the characters live under the shadow of the Holocaust.”
“An enchanting tale … A gallery of characters that provide lessons about co-existence, partnership and tolerance, yet with the understanding of the ethnic and ideological differences … Whoever reads this wonderful book will enjoy both the scent of flowers and the sweetness of honey, created by the gift of an Israeli author.
Alexandru Singer, La Realtatea Evrelasca
The Paper Bride has also been turned into a musical!
About the author:
Nava Semel (b. 1954 – d. 2 Dec 2017, Israel) held an MA in Art History and is an art critic. Semel has worked as a TV, radio and recording producer and as a journalist. She has written poetry, prose for children and adults, television scripts and opera libretti, in addition to translating plays. Semel has received several literary prizes, including the American National Jewish Book Award for children’s literature (1990), the Women Writers of the Mediterranean Award (1994), the Austrian Best Radio Drama Award (1996), the Israeli Prime Minister’s Award (1996) and Tel Aviv Woman of the Year in Literature Award (2007).
See also And the Rat Laughed by Nava Semel, published by Hybrid Publishers.