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3.12  ·  Rating details ·  25 Ratings  ·  9 Reviews
From one of Israel's most celebrated writers, an ambitious and heartbreaking novel-winner of Israel's Akum Prize for the Book of the Year-that examines through one woman's life the Jewish story and the state of Israel in the most intimate way possible. Ilana Tsuriel was a beautiful, brilliant Israeli intellectual and architect, the estranged wife of a prominent Holocaust s ...more
ebook, 336 pages
Published October 18th 2007 by Riverhead Books (first published 2007)
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I'm interested in all the literature coming out about the founding of the modern state of Israel. Unfortunately, this book had some good bits in it that were obscured by a strange system of italics.

At first I thought I had the italics figured out--why certain paragraphs were set in italics and so forth. Then the italics started to hurt my brain. Every other paragraph or so would change from italics to regular, and it would completely stop the flow of the story for me.

I know, I know. The paragra
Nov 20, 2007 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
It took about two weeks of trying before I had the time to really sit down with my book and immerse myself in the writing. This is not a strongly plot-driven novel, and is very difficult to digest in short snippets.

So despite the disjointed nature of the narrative, I really grew to appreciate the style of "Snapshots"...the fact that it is written like a letter to the narrator's past; the little windows into Ilana's mind and politics and internal conflicts with her Judaism and Zionism. Ultimatel
Aug 14, 2007 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was an extraordinarily dense novel by Israeli writer Michal Govrin about an Israeli architect who has died in a car crash leaving behind a journal and a portfolio of her work. The bulk of the book consists of her journal entries, unsent letters to her father who has passed away, project sketches, and 'snapshots' of her life as she journeys from New Jersey to Paris to Israel. The language is highly emotional/metaphorical and her architectural projects - a series of not-permanent structures ( ...more
Jun 24, 2012 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2012
Snapshots is a challenging read with an interesting but sometimes confusing style and a plot that requires some knowledge of architecture and world events to really make sense. It was a thought provoking read, one which challenged my expectations about relationships and about historical and political views.
Apr 05, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Amazing, non-traditional narrative. I thoroughly enjoyed the honesty in this novel and the intersections of culture, religion and modernity in Israel. A must-read for gaining a nuanced understanding of the Israel-Palestine conflict.
Apr 08, 2008 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book was a little hard to get into at first because of the writing style (it's written from the main character's notes & sketches after her death), but once I got into it, I liked it. The main character was a very complex woman.
Sonia Engelman
Jan 04, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A profound engrossing and thought provoking book about the Israeli - Palestinian conflict
Another book I couldn't get through. It was too fragmented for me and seeing as I have a whole list of other books to read, I'm letting this one go.
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Born in Tel Aviv, MICHAL GOVRIN is the daughter of an Israeli pioneer father and a mother who survived the Holocaust. Working as a novelist, poet, and theater director, Govrin has published nine books of poetry and fiction. In 2010, she was named one of the thirty most important modern writers by the Salon du Livre. Among her novels, The Name received the Kugel Literary Prize in Israel and was nom ...more
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