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world war ii
The Jerusalem Inception, By: Avraham Azrieli
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“Gerster, Jerusalem Gerster” doesn’t have quite the ring as, “Bond, James Bond” however as a character in author Avraham Azrieli’s book titled The Jerusalem Inception, James has nothing over Jerusalem with respect to international espionage, romantic exploits and nation building. Set in the time beginning at the end of World War II, Azrieli describes his opening episode like a period piece; a “Sepia-tone” imagery of writing about a Nazi “deposit” of tons of diamonds (yes, tons of diamonds, 18 to be exact) and gold stolen from Jews killed at the death camps. Although the German General Klaus von Koenig is killed shortly after creating his secret account number and password to the Swiss banker, Tanya Galinski, a beautiful young girl traveling with the General survives and emerges to eventually fall in love with her captors, Elie Weiss and Abraham Gerster, Jewish resistance fighters. Tanya’s epic feminine lure created an insatiable sensual attraction to both Elie and Abraham, resulting in a lover’s triangle; complete with the friction, suspense, and human gratification so articulately structured using Azrieli’s inherent talent for writing within the book’s structural underpinnings and plot machinations.

Avraham Azrieli educates as he entertains with his fact laden style of writing, while he takes the reader forward some twenty years, into the stressful world status just prior to the historic 6 Day War which broke out on June 5, 1967. As we learn about the destiny of Abraham Gerster, becoming a Rabbi living within the strict laws of the Torah, Tanya is once again attracted to him but is kept at bay. She then seduces Gerster’s son, Lemmy Gerster, a young man half her age, as they embark upon a forbidden relationship. The stolen fortune is not forgotten, as Elie, now an Israeli agent, is convinced recovering the stolen Nazi money can build a powerful infrastructure for Israel which will save the Jews from inevitably another Holocaust.

It is the acumen of subject matter combined with the art and style of Avraham Azrieli to keep the reader introduced to the secret ways of the Mossad and other international organizations; drawing from his first hand knowledge, while embellishing characters of formidable strength and fortitude. He spices the book with steamy sex, love and lust, along with the emotional perplexity of a lover’s triangle complete with forbidden taboos. Azrieli keeps true to the core of historical happenings, while the stage is set for his characters to manipulate the fate of nations, society and the world as we now know it. This book is by all means a complex matrix of facts and emotions, one worthy of anyone’s time taken to savor and enjoy. He perfectly mixes words spoken in German, Hebrew and Yiddish, as the thought processes of the characters, so foreign in many ways, are represented within their respective dialect, mannerisms and idiosyncrasies. This brought a level of authenticity and credibility to the plot, engulfing me into a time and place only imaginable to those of us born subsequently to these worldly tragic events.

To those unfamiliar of the living history of Israel, this book is a must. For those knowing the facts surrounding the creation of the Jewish State, this book is an absolute must. The inhumanity of the Nazis during the Holocaust is represented “first hand” by survivors, which will leave any sane person altered in some way. The plot and story play out in the reader’s mind with extraordinarily impressive attention to detail, as the research and structure of The Jerusalem Inception evolves to more than just a novel, becoming analogues to Avraham Azrieli’s doctorial thesis on the history of the world; specifically as related to the current conflict still ongoing in the Middle East.

Reviewed by: Gary Sorkin, Pacific Book Review

 


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