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Sixth & I

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David Grossman

To the End of the Land

Oct 14, 2010 • 7:00 pm ET
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From one of Israel’s most acclaimed writers, To the End of the Land is a novel about family life—the greatest human drama—and the cost of war.

Ora, a middle-aged Israeli mother, is on the verge of celebrating her son Ofer’s release from army service when he returns to the front for a major offensive. In a fit of preemptive grief, she sets out for a hike in the Galilee, leaving no forwarding information for the “notifiers” who could knock on her door with the worst possible news. Recently estranged from her husband, she drags along an unlikely companion: their former best friend and her former lover, Avram. Their walk has a “war and peace” rhythm, as their conversation places the most hideous trials of war next to the joys and anguish of raising children.

Grossman vividly depicts the reality and surrealism of daily life in Israel, the currents of ambivalence about war within one household, and the burdens that fall on each generation anew. His rich imagining of a family in love and crisis makes for one of the great antiwar novels of our time.