Noa Weber is the complex narrator of Hareven's moving love story, the first of her works to be translated into English. In 1972, Noa is wrapping up her final exams and preparing to be drafted into the Israeli army when she meets a Russian student named Alek. They promptly sleep together, and Noa is transfixed by her paramour. She's helpless to resist her compulsive love and sexual addiction for Alek, and fantasizes about marrying him, even though she claims he doesn't love her. In fact, her love is so strong, it remains unwavering throughout various life changes and occupations-the birth of her daughter, Hagar; a stint in law school; and a career as an author of feminist thrillers-causing Noa to wonder if her love isn't part of some larger yearning. She's a likable character, and Hareven pulls off the difficult task of allowing the reader to evaluate Noa and Alek's relationship from both inside it and outside of it. This contemplative inquiry into the nature of love speaks across cultures and introduces a compelling new Israeli voice to English-speaking readers. (Feb.)Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
The Confessions of Noa Weber: A Novelby Gail Hareven
Acclaimed author Noa Weber has a successful “feminist” life: a strong career, a wonderful daughter she raised alone, and she is a recognized and respected cultural figure. Yet her interior life is bound by her obsessive love for one man—Alek, a Russian émigré and the father of her child, who has drifted in and out of her life.
Trying to understand—as well as free herself from—this lifelong obsession, Noa turns her pen on herself, and with relentless honesty dissects her life. Against the evocative setting of turbulent, modernday Israel, this examination becomes a quest to transform irrational desire into a greater, transcendent understanding of love.
The Confessions of Noa Weber introduces a startlingly talented writer in a rich tale that illuminates the desires, yearnings, and complexities of life in Israel.
From the Trade Paperback edition.
Winner of Israel's prestigious Sapir Prize, this is Hareven's first book to be translated into English. It centers on Noa Weber, a successful, middle-aged Israeli writer and feminist. Noa spills her life onto the page with reckless abandon, writing her confessions to her 29-year-old daughter in the hopes of understanding her obsessive love for one man: Alek, an older Russian émigré she met at a party in 1972 Jerusalem when she was just 17. The bohemian lifestyle, philosophic arguments, and drinking and smoking of Alek's world were all new to Noa then, but more than that, she found Alek fascinating. Young and naive, she moved in with him and shortly became pregnant. Years later, even though Noa and Alek are still legally married, Noa refers to herself as a sex slave and sex addict. Alek, now a foreign correspondent, is a continuous but elusive presence in her life-Noa meets him in Russia or Paris whenever he beckons. Israel's leaders, wars, and its sociopolitical developments form the backdrop of this masterly written and translated story. Highly recommended.-Molly Abramowitz, Silver Spring, MDCopyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
—Jessa Crispin, NPR Books We Like
“A very wise book, and it is written in the most beautiful, precise and definitive prose.”
—Lia Nirgad, Ha’aretz Literary Supplement
“Sometimes one has the experience of reading a book and just falling in love with it—because it is so well written, so moving, it gets into your soul. That was my experience when I read The Confessions of Noa Weber.” —Ha’aretz
"Highly recommended."—Library Journal
"This contemplative inquiry into the nature of love speaks across cultures and introduces a compelling new Israeli voice to English-speaking readers." —Publishers Weekly
"[A] compelling account of obessive love." —Complete Review
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Meet the Author
Gail Hareven is one of Israel’s leading writers; the author of five novels, three story collections, plays, nonfiction, and children’s books; and the winner of the prestigious Sapir Prize for Literature. She teaches writing and feminist theory in Jerusalem. This is her first book translated into English.
From the Trade Paperback edition.
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