Our Holocaust by Amir Guttfreund

By Hagit Galatzer

ourHIf you kept a diary and documented every single day of your childhood, including what you had for lunch and what you played in recess every day at school, the result would probably be a not-so-interesting grocery list. In his novel “Bishvila giborim afim” (Heroes will fly for her) Amir Guttfreund takes such a list and turns it into a delicious novel, documenting both his and the young state of Israel coming of age story. Of course this is only expected from someone that managed to write an amusing Holocaust story, ok, maybe not amusing, but not only sad. In his highly acclaimed novel: “Our Holocaust”, Guttfreund tells a young boy’s and his cousin’s quest to decipher the secrets of their family and neighbors, all Holocaust survivors that live, along with their personal demons, in a small neighborhood in Israel. In the secrets and stories that unveil, vast historical deeds are reflected through a personal perspective. You will cry but also laugh getting to know the fictional characters and their real, or almost real, stories. read more

Catch the Jew! By Tuvia Tenenbom

By Hagit Galatzer


In the Israeli section of the Redmond library, the lower shelf is dedicated to political books, biographies and other boring books. Usually I don’t even bother giving them a second glance. To me books are a gateway to different worlds and a chance to forget my own troubles for an hour or two. But something in the cover, maybe the combination of the smiling face of Yaser Arafat and the title “Catch the Jew!” caught my attention. A closer look reviled that this is a journey in modern-day Israel, “trying to capture the inner soul of the state of Israel”… read more

High Holidays

By Hagit Galatzer


The Jewish holiday season is almost over and we can all breathe and relax a little from the temporary insanity that possessed us. It all starts with the all-important questions: “Who will we celebrate with?” and “Where???”

You would think that we left all this behind us, back in Israel, along with the pressure-cooker otherwise known as the Israeli family. No more guilt trips, taking turns with his\her family and all that stress. Finally we can celebrate in peace and quiet among best friends… read more

Summer in the Northwest

By Hagit Galatzer


Photo by Ronen Engler

Among the changes we experience as Israelis living in America, like calmly driving (including yielding of our own device!) and waiting patiently for the elevator to empty before going in… we also started to talk about the weather, well, mainly to complain about it. In Israel the weather is pretty boring in the summer and it doesn’t take much to be a weather person in August: “It’s going to be really hot today”, and “it’s going to be even hotter tomorrow…” But in Seattle, the weather is a meteorologist wet dream. So the unusual hot summer we all complained about disappeared and went back to good old Washington weather – 50 shades of gray wetness. The weather people may say a cold front arrived from Alaska and caused the barometric pressure to drop and all that, but I will tell you it’s my fault. read more

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