Olive Days: A Novel

Olive Days: A Novel

by Jessica Elisheva Emerson
Olive Days: A Novel

Olive Days: A Novel

by Jessica Elisheva Emerson


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A smoldering novel about an exhausted young mother in an Orthodox Jewish community of Los Angeles whose quest for authenticity erupts in a passionate affair following a night of wife swapping

Rina Kirsch is an exhausted young mother and Modern Orthodox Jew in the Pico-Robertson neighborhood of Los Angeles. Dutifully keeping to the formidable expectations of a traditional household connects Rina with generations past and those to come. But a contradiction burns at her center: Rina is an atheist. She is also stymied in her life and marriage.

Hoping to reinvigorate their relationship, Rina’s husband convinces her to partake in a night of wife swapping with other Orthodox couples. Rather than preserve her marriage, however, the swap plunges Rina down a heady path that begins with a rekindled passion for painting and culminates in an intoxicating affair with Will, her married Mexican American art teacher. Clandestine rendezvous and stolen moments of ardor awaken Rina to an existence beyond the confining parameters of tradition, offering a glimpse at the possible life she left behind in the olive groves of her youth. As the blush of erotic thrill comes into sharp contrast with the complications of living a secret life, Rina must decide if it’s worth sacrificing everything she’s ever known to fully inhabit the uncharted landscape unfolding before her, one where her needs take precedence.

Told in the fevered tenor common to both lust and religious devotion, Olive Days is an unforgettable story of the agonizing choices women make to balance duty against desire.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781640096530
Publisher: Catapult
Publication date: 09/10/2024
Pages: 320
Sales rank: 213,588
Product dimensions: 5.50(w) x 8.25(h) x (d)

About the Author

JESSICA ELISHEVA EMERSON is obsessed with cooking beans, growing food, eating pie, sleeping in on Shabbat, and working toward a better world. A Tucson native, Jessica spent 22 years in Los Angeles—including studies at USC and Antioch University—before returning to the Sonoran desert, where she lives with her husband and children
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