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The Rabbi takes a leave of absence to spend 3 months in Jerusalem. The book was publshed in 1972, so was written in the period between the 6-day war (1967) and the Yom Kippur War (1973). This was around the time I first visited Israel, so I experienced a certain nostalgia in the listening. Among other things, the story dramatizes the tension between the sabras and non-religious Jews and the strictly observant Hasidim and other religious sects, a tension that has only become more exacerbated with time, especially in Jerusalem and environs. In this story, it is dramatized mostly by conflicts between parents and children. The mystery itself concerns the murder of an auto trader, apparently by a terrorist bomb. As usual, the Rabbi eventually solves the crime for the police, seemingly by logic, although I found it hard to believe he could have discerned all that he told just by a careful examination of some of the evidence. Despite my disappointment, I don't regret the time spent listening. The narration by George Guidall is excellent, as usual.
3 of 3 people found this review helpful
What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?
less trivia and some mystery or detective content
Would you ever listen to anything by Harry Kemelman again?
What about George Guidall’s performance did you like?
good reader, boring book
You didn’t love this book... but did it have any redeeming qualities?
Any additional comments?
very misleading, the book was described as a mystery but it is so full of irrelevant interpersonal conversations and trivial details that have nothing to do with a crime or mystery, it is a waist of time
1 of 2 people found this review helpful
The Rabbi's sojourn in the Holy Land isn't all milk and honey, how could it be? Quite apart from the intrigue of the crime, it is instructive to look back a few decades (to a time I remember as a teenager) on the world tensions, politics, trouble in the Middle East of those days and compare with today's situation! I went on pilgrimage to the Holy Land a few years ago, so I found particularly interesting to note developments in Jerusalem and elsewhere-some good, some not at all good- and to hear the impressions of other, earlier visitors as expressed by the Smalls, the journalist and his student son, and a couple of Barnard's Crossing's unsubtle businessmen.
The narration is well done, and fortunately the entire series has the same reader, thus maintaining continuity.