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Jerusalem: A Family Portrait

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Jerusalem: A Family Portrait Cover

ISBN13: 9781596435759
ISBN10: 1596435755
Condition: Standard
Dustjacket: Standard
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Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

Jerusalem is a sweeping, epic graphic novel that follows a single family—three generations and fifteen very different people—as they are swept up in chaos, war, and nation-making from 1940-1948. Faith, family, and politics are the heady mix that fuel this ambitious, cinematic graphic novel.
 
With Jerusalem, author-filmmaker Boaz Yakin turns his finely-honed storytelling skills to a topic near to his heart: Yakin's family lived in Palestine during this period and was caught up in the turmoil of war just as his characters are. This is a personal work, but it is not a book with a political ax to grind. Rather, this comic seeks to tell the stories of a huge cast of memorable characters as they wrestle with a time when nothing was clear and no path was smooth.

Review:

"This grim and relentless comic by filmmaker Yakin was inspired by tales his Israeli father told him. It follows the families of two estranged Israeli brothers — focusing primarily on the sons of those brothers — as the many wars involving Jerusalem rage around them. They suffer life, death, and everything in between, all while searching for their own identities within a passionate love for the place they call home. The book draws lovely if depressing parallels between these families and the Arabs and Jews, as they fight for control of Jerusalem. While the troubles of the Middle East are familiar , it's impossible not to get drawn in to the plight of these characters. The youngest sons, first cousins Motti and Jonathan, are perhaps the sole bright spots and also the most tragic aspect of this work. Best friends regardless of their fathers' estrangement, they are eventually pulled apart as they grow up, and as Jerusalem continues to pull itself apart. The way Motti and Jonathan's story ends is somehow both shocking and inevitable. Bertozzi's art, in grimly appropriate shades of black, white, and grey, sets a fitting tone for a story filled with unflinchingly honest violence." Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.

About the Author

Boaz Yakin is a screenwriter and film director based in New York City. Yakin studied filmmaking at New York City College and New York University.  As a producer he has been involved in bringing projects as diverse as Hostel and the award-winning Bombay Beach to the screen. His first graphic novel published by First Second, was Marathon with Joe Infurnari.

Nick Bertozzi lives in Queens, NY, with his wife and daughters and is the author and artist of many other cartoon stories, among them The Salon, Houdini: The Handcuff King, and First Second's Lewis & Clark and Stuffed! He is a teacher at the School of Visual Arts.

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Courtesy of Mother Daughter Book Club com, May 1, 2013 (view all comments by Courtesy of Mother Daughter Book Club com)
Jerusalem was often a time of chaos and conflict during the years the state of Israel was being established in the 1940s. Communists, Zionists, Jews, Arabs, and British soldiers were mixed into a boiling pot that pitted brothers against brothers and race against race.

Graphic novelists Boaz Yakin and Nick Bertozzi have sought to capture those unsettling times through the lens of one family: the Hallabys. In their novel, Jerusalem: A Family Portrait, they introduce readers to brothers Izak and Yakov, the patriarchs, estranged from each other over past differences. Izak and Yakov’s children are caught up in their personal war, as well as in the larger conflict that swirls around them.

Izak’s adult sons are a reflection of the myriad forces at work. Two of them fought with the British army in Europe during World War II. One would like to see Israel become Communist and cooperates with Arabs who feel the same, another fights with Jewish rebels. Everyone suffers privation and shortages during the most difficult times.

Each family member has a different perspective, and through their eyes the larger tale unfolds. While this is fairly recent history, it also seems to be not very well known or understood. The authors provide background in an introduction that provides a map of the British Mandate Palestine in 1945, a brief history of the city of Jerusalem beginning with the Ottoman takeover in 1517 until 1939, and a personal history of the Hallaby family. The stories are based on the experiences of Yakin’s own family, who lived in Palestine during this time.

As with any good graphic novel, the images tell so much of the tale, and such is the case in Jerusalem. The fighting, confusion, suffering, and turmoil leap off the pages, as do small moments of joy and triumph that sometimes shine through. I recommend it for anyone who loves history.
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Product Details

ISBN:
9781596435759
Author:
Yakin, Boaz
Publisher:
First Second
Author:
Bertozzi, Nick
Subject:
Middle East - Israel
Subject:
Graphic Novels - General
Subject:
Middle East/Israel & Palestine
Subject:
cultural heritage
Subject:
Israel
Subject:
Nonfiction
Subject:
Graphic Novels-Nonfiction
Subject:
Historical fiction
Subject:
Jewish
Edition Description:
Graphic Novels
Publication Date:
20130431
Binding:
HARDCOVER
Language:
English
Illustrations:
black and white illustrations throughout
Pages:
400
Dimensions:
8.5 x 6 in

Related Subjects

Arts and Entertainment » Music » Music Business and Songwriting
Biography » General
Fiction and Poetry » Graphic Novels » Alternative
Fiction and Poetry » Graphic Novels » General
Fiction and Poetry » Graphic Novels » Nonfiction
History and Social Science » Middle East » General History
History and Social Science » World History » Middle East
Religion » Comparative Religion » General

Jerusalem: A Family Portrait Used Hardcover
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Product details 400 pages First Second - English 9781596435759 Reviews:
"Publishers Weekly Review" by , "This grim and relentless comic by filmmaker Yakin was inspired by tales his Israeli father told him. It follows the families of two estranged Israeli brothers — focusing primarily on the sons of those brothers — as the many wars involving Jerusalem rage around them. They suffer life, death, and everything in between, all while searching for their own identities within a passionate love for the place they call home. The book draws lovely if depressing parallels between these families and the Arabs and Jews, as they fight for control of Jerusalem. While the troubles of the Middle East are familiar , it's impossible not to get drawn in to the plight of these characters. The youngest sons, first cousins Motti and Jonathan, are perhaps the sole bright spots and also the most tragic aspect of this work. Best friends regardless of their fathers' estrangement, they are eventually pulled apart as they grow up, and as Jerusalem continues to pull itself apart. The way Motti and Jonathan's story ends is somehow both shocking and inevitable. Bertozzi's art, in grimly appropriate shades of black, white, and grey, sets a fitting tone for a story filled with unflinchingly honest violence." Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
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