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Blue Mountain

by Meir Shalev

Don't be put off by the length or the cover. This book has a directness of style which makes it easy to enter into an unfamiliar culture. It deals with some large themes but a gentle humour pervades. If you like your characters to be larger than life this is the one for you!

Extract

The farmers of our village can guess a calf's weight at a glance, predict the winds from the colour of the moon, and tell you the nitrogen content of the soil by tasting an onion. My mother took a good look at Benjamin's calm eyes and solid shoulders, let go, and plummeted, her dress flying over her face and stomach soaring up into her ribs. Eyes tightly shut she felt herself cradled in his huge hands. ...

'You can let go of me now,' she smiled. She had got her breath back, but her nails still dug frantically into his shoulders and arms. 'You were great.' My father was nonplussed. He had never before been so close to a female body.

Translated by Hillel Halkin

Parallels

The Little World of Don Camillo by Giovanni Guareschi
Porofino by Frank Schaefer
 

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