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The Dovekeepers: A Novel

The Dovekeepers: A Novel


The Dovekeepers: A Novel

valutazioni:
4/5 (117 valutazioni)
Lunghezza:
19 ore
Pubblicato:
Oct 4, 2011
ISBN:
9781442344570
Formato:
Audiolibro

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Descrizione

Over five years in the writing, Alice Hoffman's most ambitious and mesmerizing work ever, a triumph of imagination and research set in ancient Israel.

The author of such iconic bestsellers as Illumination Night, Practical Magic, Fortune's Daughter, and Oprah's Book Club selection Here on Earth, Alice Hoffman is one of the most popular and memorable writers of her generation. Now, in The Dovekeepers, Hoffman delivers her most masterful work yet-one that draws on her passion for mythology, magic, and archaeology and her inimitable understanding of women.

In 70 C.D., nine hundred Jews held out for months against armies of Romans on a mountain in the Judean desert, Masada. According to the ancient historian Josephus, two women and five children survived. Based on this tragic historical event, Hoffman weaves a spellbinding tale of four extraordinary, bold, resourceful, and sensuous women, each of whom comes to Masada by a different path. Yael's mother died in childbirth, and her father never forgave her for that death. Revka, a village baker's wife, watched the horrifically brutal murder of her daughter by Roman soldiers; she brings to Masada her twin grandsons, rendered mute by their own witness. Aziza is a warrior's daughter, raised as a boy, a fearless rider and expert marksman, who finds passion with another soldier. Shirah is wise in the ways of ancient magic and medicine, a woman with uncanny insight and power. The lives of these four complex and fiercely independent women intersect in the desperate days of the siege, as the Romans draw near. All are dovekeepers, and all are also keeping secrets-about who they are, where they come from, who fathered them, and whom they love.

This novel is Alice Hoffman's masterpiece.
Pubblicato:
Oct 4, 2011
ISBN:
9781442344570
Formato:
Audiolibro

Disponibile anche come...

Disponibile anche come libroLibro


Informazioni sull'autore

Alice Hoffman was born in New York City and grew up on Long Island. She wrote her first novel, Property Of, while studying creative writing at Stanford University, and since then has published more than thirty books for readers of all ages, including the recent New York Times bestsellers The Museum of Extraordinary Things and The Dovekeepers. Two of her novels, Practical Magic and Aquamarine, have been made into films, and Here on Earth was an Oprah’s Book Club choice. All told, Hoffman’s work has been published in more than twenty languages and one hundred foreign editions. She lives outside of Boston.

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117 valutazioni / 84 Recensioni
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Recensioni dei lettori

  • (5/5)
    Picked this up from the library. Just ordered it in paperback to have for my girls to read. That good.
  • (2/5)
    Having loved the Red Tent, I figured I would give this a try. I wasn't too impressed with this book, the characters weren't worth investing in. I could easily put it down and not have thought twice about it.
  • (4/5)
    I liked the way this book was narrated by 3 different characters. There were many religious references that were a bit much since I am not really familiar with the old or the new testament. I liked that this was taken from a real event in 73 A.D. and learned a bit of history at the same time.
  • (3/5)
    A must read for anyone interested in the story of Masada. Slow at times it still brings you vivid descriptions of the landscape, rich characters, and a good historical framework of Israel around 70CE.
  • (4/5)
    Jewish historian wrote that two women and five children survived the mass suicide of 960 Zionists at Masada after the Roman siege of this Jewish fortress in 73 C.E. Through the voices of four women protagonists, Alice Hoffman relates the interrelated lives of each protagonist's journey to Masada, the events of the invasion and the identities of those who escaped to Alexandria in this novel of historical fiction. As is typical of this author, the novel is peppered with examples of magical realism.
  • (5/5)
    Lovely read, feels authentic. Great historical detail and character complexity. Pay close attention to all the detail.
  • (5/5)
    A moving, passionate tale of war and struggle, grief and joy, faith and cultural clash, and deep abiding love. It was read beautifully, in the empathetic voices of true storytellers- as if the story was their own.
  • (1/5)
    I pick the audiobook because I had loved reading "The Museum of Extraordinary Things" from the same author. I was disappointed to discover that I really did not like "The Dovekeepers". I find the story too depressive and sad without a real narrative need. The Jewish history and culture description is often inaccurate or wrong, collecting must of the time a bunch of banalities decorated with fantasies.
  • (4/5)
    The Dovekeepers: A Novel (Kindle Edition) "The Dovekeepers: A Novel" is historical fiction based on the Roman siege of Masada circa 73 CE. This attack is historic. Josephus, the historian, recorded the incident. History tells us there were 7 survivors, 5 children and 2 adults. This is the story of how the residents of Masada came to be there and what came to pass. The book could have been better if more detail and attention was given to the relationships in book instead of on details of spells, charms, amulets, and superstitions
  • (4/5)
    This review originally posted at Christa's Hooked on BooksThousands of years ago when the Romans invaded Jerusalem a small group of Jews escaped to the mountain fortress of Masada. There they lived as a community, as the war raged on below them. From the little we know, when the Romans finally managed to conquer Masada they found everyone dead except two women and five children. A true historical mystery.The Dovekeepers tells the story of four women who survived the hardships of the desert and found themselves amidst the challenges of fortress life. Yael, a rejected daughter, whose skin is marked with blood, Revka, who witnessed her daughter's murder, Aziza a young girl with a warrior's spirit and Shirah, the community witch and medicine woman. Together they care for the doves, keep each other's secrets and do what they can to survive.The book begins “We had been wandering for so long I forgot what it was like to live within walls or sleep through the night. In that time I lost all that I might have possessed if Jerusalem had not fallen: a husband, a family, a future of my own. My girlhood disappeared in the desert. The person I'd once been vanished as I wrapped myself in white when the dust rose into the clouds” From the moment I read these lines was hooked. The writing in this book is so beautiful. Steeped with emotion and incredible detail is was so easy to get lost in the story. You can tell Alice Hoffman put a lot of time and effort into researching this books. I can picture the world of Masada and the desert perfectly.Though I loved all four women I think Yael and Aziza are my favourite. They are the youngest of the four but I think they are the strongest and the bravest. In many ways both are alone and instead of giving up or giving into despair, they hold on. In the face of adversity they push forward. They are continually evolving, trying to find themselves in the midst of chaos, and I find them admirable.This is an incredible piece of writing and it is truly Alice Hoffman's masterpiece. It is the perfect book to curl up with and just let yourself get lost. If you're a fan of historical fiction or are simply looking for a beautifully written and tragic story, The Dovekeepers is one you won't want to miss!
  • (5/5)
    An emotional, heartwrenching tale, beautifully written, that reminds the listener of the complexities of the world we live in, and "the world yet to come." The traditions, teachings, historical offerings of these words, will draw me back to listen, once more. I am grateful for this story.
  • (5/5)
    I am not even sure where to begin to review this. The setting was beautiful. I easily visualized every character, every scene and felt every emotion. As usual, Hoffman's use of magic was so seamlessly included that is was more reality than magical realism. The historical research behind this book has sparked an interest in a portion of history I never considered all that much before today. Fascinating, breathtaking. Brilliant. The only thing I didn't like about this book is the picture on the cover, actually...
  • (5/5)
    Sometimes the most difficult reads are the most rewarding. The Dovekeepers took me a long time to read. I put it down at several points and had to come back to it. The writing was lyrical and dense with information. The book was obviously well-researched and is based on historical events. The voices of the characters rang with authenticity and their strength was earned through many trials. I could feel the desperation, the unquenchable thirst (both literal and figurative). The emotions were sensual, primal, and often brutal. The sheer courage of these women, their ultimate humanity and resolve reward the reader. Also, the events depicted here are not well-known, but deserve to be told. Hoffman tells this story with beauty, mysticism and an unrelenting commitment to the truth. I was profoundly moved. This is story that will remain with me for a long time.
  • (4/5)
    In 70 C.E a group of about 900 Jewish rebels fled Jerusalem and settled in Masada, an ancient fortress high in the desert mountains and considered to be indestructible. There, they held out for months against armies of Romans.

    Read about four strong-willed and fiercely independent women. Learn their secrets and how their lives intersect.
  • (4/5)
    Harrowing but worth it. I am normally not a fan of Hoffman. Here on Earth? More like Hell on Earth. This though? Great.
  • (4/5)
    It is hard to rate the first book of the year. This rating could be higher or even lower. I had many mixed feelings reading this story but essentially it is a story of relationships. Women's relationships with each other. The story is set in 70 CE and is a retelling of the Jewish hold-out against the armies of Romans on Masada. According to history, two women and five children survived to tell the story. This is that story. I like Alice Hoffman as an author but this story seemed different than any other I've read by the author. It is a mixture of Jewish belief woven through with magic and ancient medicine and worship of the goddess of Ashtoreth. There was something in the story that reminded me of The Red Tent. This is our January f2f bookclub read and it will be interesting to discuss it. Medicine was a very interesting topic in this book and more so probably because I am a nurse. Medicine was initially woman's area and was only taken over later by men (from my studies of Medical Sociology). This book really explores woman's role in medicine. Ms Hoffman often incorporates magic in her writing but in this one, there is less magical realism and more a sense that what the women believed were spells and magic was really the beginnings of healing arts. I think the book does a fair representation of Judaism. I think even the weaving in of the goddess Ashtoreth and the overlap of mystical and religious elements probably is accurate though those were the areas I found troublesome.
  • (4/5)
    3.5 starsIn Ancient Israel in the year 73 C.E. Romans attacked a small group of Jewish people who had already been pushed from their homes and lives in Jerusalem and elsewhere. Two women and five children survived. Alice Hoffman has created a fictional account to document what happened. The book tells the story of four women who were there and how they got there. Yael, whose mother died when she was born. Her father was an assassin and blamed Yael for her mother's death. Revka was a baker's wife. She took care of her two grandchildren, who had been completely silent since their mother died. Shirah was a witch and Aziza was her daughter, who took on the persona of a boy. This was good. I found the stories of the younger women (Yael and Aziza) more interesting than Revka's and Shirah's stories. I also thought the last bit really picked up and that's when I really wanted to keep reading.
  • (5/5)
    Wow. I took my time reading this one, and it deserved it. One of the best novels I have read in a long time. Absolutely gorgeous.
  • (5/5)
    The historical story of Masada is highly debated. Not mentioned in the Bible, told by only one historian, and archaeological findings not able to reveal the thoughts and motives of people, the story of the Masada could be as much legend as fact. However, that said, the relationships of women portrayed in this book are so accurate. Fictional characters all, but these fictional characters accurately reflect the weaknesses and strengths, the loves and hates, and the questionable and noble motives of people throughout history. The relationships of the major female characters in this book are very believable and demonstrate that the relationships of mothers, daughters, and sisters are not necessarily based on birth.As a fan of historical fiction, I do appreciate Hoffman's attempt of accuracy in the telling of the Masada story in as much as possible. The story is based on much historical fact that can be verified. On that background, she paints a story of several women brought together as keepers of the doves in the Masada fortress. Each woman coming from a different background but all bound to the Jewish faith. The plight of women during this time was harsh regardless of status; each woman has her own story to tell. I appreciated the author's telling of each woman's story in different chapters with the plot thread running throughout.This is not particularly easy read, but certainly one worth the effort especially to fans of historical fiction. This book also caused me to reread some of the chapters in the Old Testament. No, the story is certainly different, but life in the dessert, the ancient Jewish laws and traditions, the role of women and family, and the stories of war and revenge told in the Old Testament became more vivid after reading this novel simply because this work of fiction gave me a new perspective of what daily life in the times of ancient Palestine was like.
  • (4/5)
    The Dovekeepers: A Novel (Kindle Edition) "The Dovekeepers: A Novel" is historical fiction based on the Roman siege of Masada circa 73 CE. This attack is historic. Josephus, the historian, recorded the incident. History tells us there were 7 survivors, 5 children and 2 adults. This is the story of how the residents of Masada came to be there and what came to pass. The book could have been better if more detail and attention was given to the relationships in book instead of on details of spells, charms, amulets, and superstitions
  • (3/5)
    The tale of four women who end up dovekeepers at Masada, where the Jews attempted to hold out against the Roman army in the first century. Yael, Revka, Aziza, and Shirah each come from different backgrounds and each tells a different story of their path to Masada. An interesting novel, rich with the drama of the time, but I didn't care for the way the narrators kept switching - it felt like I had to start over and cover the same ground with each character instead of advancing the story.
  • (1/5)
    The potential of this book is astounding, yet the execution so poor that any goodwill towards the story is effectively squandered by a few pages in. The characters are flat and their voices barely differentiated; there almost seems no need to have four separate voices since the voices are identical. The situations are melodramatic. The writing is plodding and the book too long. Edits, which one guesses would have been extremely wrenching for the author, could make this book into a lean and intriguing story worthy of praise. But as it stands, this book is painful and not worth the time involved to get through the meandering, overwritten prose and the inane characters.
  • (5/5)
    Loved this book. Although based on a documented historical happening, the author uses her imagination to tell the story of four different women. Some you liked, some not so much, but all were brave, strong women who had to withstand great turmoil and upheaval in their lives.
  • (5/5)
    Didn't think I would like a historically based novel. Well, I was so wrong. I loved it. Though the novel was set 2k years ago, it read as very contemporary. The women's thoughts and feelings are very much the same as today's anguished, the rituals are also carried on today.
  • (5/5)
    Great historical fiction!Though it did start out a bit slow with a lot of wordy details..... it picked up nicely once the other women were introduced and I was captivated by their individual stories.
  • (1/5)
    Sloppy second rate writing full of contrived melodrama.This is a good book for anyone who doesn't want to think. Consider a rock to the head while reading to keep away any thinking, you won't miss anything. I didn't love many of the plot points, found some awkward at best, but mainly I was bothered by the lack of depth and noticeably poor writing. In place of depth and substance, there is contrived melodrama. As for the writing, there is a flow to it, but sometimes the words stopped making sense or were inconsistent with what was said earlier. Apparently Hoffman didn't see it or chose not to bother with it. Hoffman says this took five years to write. Since 2007 she published four regular novels and one young adult. This was published in 2011. I don't see how she could have spent much of those five years actually researching/writing this book. Anyway, it doesn't show.
  • (4/5)
    I have to say that this was an emotional journey for me. It started as a slow read, although lovely writing, I was having a difficult time getting thru the 1st voice (Yael) seemed to drag. The 2nd voice (Revka) was so heart wrenching, her story sparked a renewed interest in the book. The 3rd voice (Aziza) slowed the book down again for me and I just wanted it to be over. When I finally reached the 4th voice (Shirah) I was overwhelmed with the grief of this story. Hoffman brought to life the Masada and retold the story through the lives of 4 women who made there travels from different worlds who came together and grew strength from each other. The descriptions were so vivid that I felt that I walked beside these women thru their journey and witnessed the story 1st hand. Very moving re-telling of the Jewish stronghold of Masada and Roman Legion waging war upon them. The warriors, the Essenes and Dovekeepers and the spiritual stories made for a powerful story.
  • (4/5)
    This was a really beautiful book. It was lengthy and still I did not want it to end.
  • (2/5)
    I was very disappointed in the novel. I found it to slow moving and barely engaging.
  • (2/5)

    1 persona l'ha trovata utile

    Having loved the Red Tent, I figured I would give this a try. I wasn't too impressed with this book, the characters weren't worth investing in. I could easily put it down and not have thought twice about it.

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