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VOYAIsrael is a country that expects something from its young people: Both young men and women must participate in national military service once they are eighteen. Valerie Zenatti moved to Israel from France when she was thirteen. This memoir chronicles the eighteen-year-old author's time in the Israeli Army. A girl who thinks for herself, questions reality, and sees the poetry in life, Zenatti has a difficult transition. She is separated from her family, friends, and the casual student life she is used to. Once in the military she is issued a uniform and expected to conform, and her time is no longer her own-what she does and when she does it is all determined for her. Eventually she needs the help of Army psychologists to counsel her through her Army experience. But she ultimately adapts and learns to fire an Uzi, wash endless dishes, and obey orders without questions. She completes her two years of national service working in military intelligence. Zenatti is a typical older youth in a situation that most American teens will never experience. Written in a casual style, this intimate account of Zenatti's responses to her new situation is not a detailed depiction of military life. She includes the anguish of breaking up with her boyfriend and her first tentative steps away from the friends who shared her teen years. This book could generate discussions about the idea of national service, Israel, and the Middle East, and cultural similarities and differences among teens. VOYA CODES: 3Q 3P S (Readable without serious defects; Will appeal with pushing; Senior High, defined as grades 10 to 12). 2005 (orig. 2002), Bloomsbury, 250p., Ages 15 to 18.