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The People of Forever are Not Afraid

by Shani Boianjiu

It is hard to imagine being a young Israeli woman growing up with impending military service as a norm, but this book had me right there with Yael and her friends, sharing the fears, the blood, the dust, the violence and the danger.

Extract

My belt, green trousers, green shirt, green vest, bra, the knickers I had flipped inside out because I had run out of clean ones. I took it all off and I looked at myself naked in the stained mirror. The breasts that were too big, the new lines that had forms at the edges of my mouth.
I saw that I was a soldier then, and I looked and looked and looked, and I was not afraid. It was a few weeks before I turned nineteen. It was the night before I filled out the forms volunteering to go to officers’ school. I saw that I was a soldier then and knew that I would be an officer, and I was not afraid.
I never showered that night. I thought of Nur; I thought that she must have showered and that she was already working on getting Fadi out of the Israeli jail, and that she was a strong woman, and then I remembered that I had created her, had invented her, and that I was a soldier and she was not real.

Parallels

Pomegranite Sky by Louise Sorayah Black
Dreaming of Palestine: A Novel of Friendship, Love & War by Randa Ghazy
Americanah by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
 

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