Qty:1
  • List Price: $16.95
  • Save: $2.37 (14%)
FREE Shipping on orders over $35.
In Stock.
Ships from and sold by Amazon.com.
Gift-wrap available.
Apples from the Desert: S... has been added to your Cart
FREE Shipping on orders over $35.
Condition: Used: Good
Comment: Solid used copy with visible wear. FREE SHIPPING w/AMAZON PRIME!
Have one to sell? Sell on Amazon
Flip to back Flip to front
Listen Playing... Paused   You're listening to a sample of the Audible audio edition.
Learn more
See this image

Apples from the Desert: Selected Stories (The Helen Rose Scheuer Jewish Women's Series) Paperback – April 1, 2000


See all 3 formats and editions Hide other formats and editions
Amazon Price New from Used from
Paperback
"Please retry"
$14.58
$7.24 $1.00


Frequently Bought Together

Apples from the Desert: Selected Stories (The Helen Rose Scheuer Jewish Women's Series) + Wild Thorns (Interlink World Fiction)
Price for both: $26.20

Buy the selected items together

Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought

NO_CONTENT_IN_FEATURE

Best Books of the Month
Best Books of the Month
Want to know our Editors' picks for the best books of the month? Browse Best Books of the Month, featuring our favorite new books in more than a dozen categories.

Product Details

  • Series: The Helen Rose Scheuer Jewish Women's Series
  • Paperback: 240 pages
  • Publisher: The Feminist Press at CUNY (April 1, 2000)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1558612351
  • ISBN-13: 978-1558612358
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.7 x 8.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 9.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #528,594 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

"Months afterwards she would remember that morning with dismay, when she had sat with them for the first time, as though they were at home there: drinking from cups like welcome guests ... and only the part of her, the part that didn't laugh with them, thought: Could these hands, serving coffee, be the ones that planted the booby-trapped doll at the gate of the religious school at the end of the street?"

In the stories of Israeli author Savyon Liebrecht, personal relationships can't help but become political. In "A Room on the Roof," an unnamed Jewish woman hires three Arab workers to build an addition onto her house while her husband is out of the country. So paralyzed is she by her fear of Arabs, she is unable to recognize the essential decency of these particular men; on the rare occasions when she is able to see past her own blind bigotry, the realization that her workmen are human beings with their own set of hopes, fears, and prejudices is so terrifying that she becomes even more strident in her intolerance.

Though a few of the stories in Apples from the Desert are directly concerned with interactions between Jews and Arabs, the collection is, in fact, more about how Israelis deal with each other. The Holocaust is the unmentioned elephant in the drawing room, for Liebrecht, herself the daughter of concentration camp survivors, is particularly interested in the impact that tragedy has had on the children of survivors. In "Hayuta's Engagement Party," everyone fears that Grandpa, a Holocaust survivor, will ruin this festive occasion (as he has many others) with his grim recitals of death-camp atrocities. The protagonist of "'What Am I Speaking, Chinese?' She Said to Him" returns to her childhood home in Poland in order to stage a sexual encounter in the same room where her parents--again Holocaust survivors--once argued about sex.

If the Holocaust is one theme running through most of these stories, the position of women in modern Israeli society is another. Many of the women--especially older ones--in Liebrecht's stories are in oppressive marriages with men who neglect, ridicule, and sometimes physically abuse them. In "Compassion," a Jewish woman who was hidden from the Nazis in a Catholic convent as a child marries an Arab man who eventually imprisons her and takes a younger wife. Victoria, the mother of a rebellious daughter in the collection's title story, only recognizes the depths of her own marital misery when she sees the loving relationship her child has formed outside the legal bonds of matrimony.

There is nothing subtle about Liebrecht's stories, and readers accustomed to the finely tuned ironies of an Ann Beattie or Alice Munro may find these stories a trifle emphatic. However, anyone interested in the literature coming out of Israel today will find Savyon Liebrecht's window on the land and the people illuminating, if sometimes uncomfortable reading. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Publishers Weekly

As Grace Paley notes in her foreword to the first English translation of popular Israeli writer Leibrecht's work, these dozen stories are "personal?but they are also fierce pleas for understanding and justice." Their themes are somber: the enmity between Jews and Arabs; the oppression of women in sometimes violently unhappy marriages; the lingering effects of the Holocaust. In "A Room on the Roof," a young Jewish woman finds herself drawn to the educated and sensitive leader of a group of Arabs she has hired?against her husband's wishes?to build an addition to her house, but prejudice, misunderstanding and fear overcome her attempts to connect with them. In the title story, a woman who has gone to a kibbutz to retrieve her runaway daughter comes to admire the egalitarian affair between the girl and a fellow kibbutznik, but returns to her own loveless marriage at the end. And in "Hayuta's Engagement," a woman tries unsuccessfully to mediate between her heartless daughter's desire for a smooth engagement party and her father's compulsive need to reveal the horrors of his long-ago concentration camp existence; though compassionate, she buckles under her daughter's insistence that the old man be silenced, with tragic results. Liebrecht's strong prose bears witness to conflict in powerful ways, and if her refusal to provide upbeat endings makes the tone of these tales unrelievedly dark, she is true to her subjects and their history.
Copyright 1998 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

More About the Author

Discover books, learn about writers, read author blogs, and more.

Customer Reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars
Share your thoughts with other customers

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Scribe on March 10, 2001
Format: Paperback
Great, tight, vivid, exact writing about the Important Things (universal concerns, issues, and feelings) in the mood of a calm and astute observer/chronicler -- with soul. Perfect. Although these stories are primarily concerned with Israelis, I encouraged an East Indian friend to read "The Homesick Scientist"; it spoke to him so deeply of his own private experience that he immediately ordered the book (from Amazon, of course).
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Esther Nebenzahl on October 13, 2000
Format: Paperback
This is a collection of 12 lovely short stories published in Israel between 1986 and 1992. Savyon Liebrecht is a child of survivors from the Holocaust and like many other children from parents who underwent the same experience, she had to deal with the trauma of the past which most often meant trying to understand and live with the "silence" from her forbears. Not only is this fact reflected in her stories, but she also addresses the problems in the interaction between Israelis and Arabs, as well as between Israelis themselves. Her stories reflect the influence of political and social conflicts in daily life and family structure. The author has a very honest approach to those conflicts, with a direct and simple style, most outstanding for its feministic and humane touch.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on March 25, 1999
Format: Hardcover
This author presents experiences in the lives of of people that show her intuitive understandings of their fears, loves, hates and motivations. In the process she presents a valid picture of Israel and some of its people.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Eric Maroney on May 7, 2007
Format: Paperback
Savyon Liebrecht's collection of short fiction, Apples from the Desert, here culled from three short story collections, and here translated from the Hebrew, is extraordinary in its range and depth. Liebrecht takes on a variety of issues which confront modern Israelis: the divide between Ashkenazi and Sephardic Jews, the oppression, both subtle and profound, of women in Israel's patriarchal society, the Arab Israeli conflict, the long shadow of the Holocaust. Reading these stories, it becomes quickly apparent to the reader which "issue" Liebrecht is going to tackle in each story. But the stories do not have a programmatic feel about them; Liebrecht never allows the moral to muddle her attempt to create a certain strained atmosphere and foreboding sense doom. Apples from the Desert is relentless both in its social critique and a penetrating analysis of what all fiction is about, what it means to be a human being in a harsh world.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By G. Falke on September 18, 2009
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I'm not a lover of short stories, but Savyon Liebrecht has written a collection of Israeli short stories that disabused me of that notion.

She creates full characters and plots in eloquent, flowing style with so few words that it's astonishing. Her strong female characters come to life and literally jump off the pages.

A good travel book since each vignette is only 15-20 pages enabling you to stop and start quickly without missing a beat. Highly recommended.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again

What Other Items Do Customers Buy After Viewing This Item?