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The Dovekeepers A Novel (Paperback)

Author:  Alice Hoffman
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The Dovekeepers Hoffman, Alice 1 of 1
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Learn more about The Dovekeepers:

Format: Paperback
ISBN-10: 1451617488
ISBN-13: 9781451617481
Sku: 225180082
Publish Date: 4/3/2012
Pages:  505
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"Dovekeepers" is Hoffman''s most ambitious and mesmerizing novel about four bold, resourceful women who survive on a mountain in the Judean desert 2,000 years ago against Roman armies.
From the Publisher:
Over five years in the writing,

The Dovekeepers is Alice Hoffman’s most ambitious and mesmerizing novel, a tour de force of imagination and research, set in ancient Israel.

In 70 C.E., nine hundred Jews held out for months against armies of Romans on Masada, a mountain in the Judean desert. According to the ancient historian Josephus, two women and five children survived. Based on this tragic and iconic event, Hoffman’s novel is a spellbinding tale of four extraordinarily bold, resourceful, and sensuous women, each of whom has come to Masada by a different path. Yael’s mother died in childbirth, and her father, an expert assassin, never forgave her for that death. Revka, a village baker’s wife, watched the horrifically brutal murder of her daughter by Roman soldiers; she brings to Masada her young grandsons, rendered mute by what they have witnessed. Aziza is a warrior’s daughter, raised as a boy, a fearless rider and an expert marksman who finds passion with a fellow soldier. Shirah, born in Alexandria, is wise in the ways of ancient magic and medicine, a woman with uncanny insight and power.

The lives of these four complex and fiercely independent women intersect in the desperate days of the siege. All are dovekeepers, and all are also keeping secrets—about who they are, where they come from, who fathered them, and whom they love. The Dovekeepers is Alice Hoffman’s masterpiece.

This sprawling and ambitious historical tale is told from the vantage point of four very different, but equally strong and complicated, first-century women who have come to live at Masada, the temporary mountain fortress where 900 Jews fought off Roman armies for several months in 70 C.E. The protagonists, who work together in the dovecotes, include Ya'el, who yearns for love and acceptance after her father rejects her; Revka, who must cope with the aftermath of her daughter and husband's violent deaths; Aziza, a warrior's daughter raised as a male; and Shirah, a witchy prophetess. Although fleshed out and multilayered, the women also come to represent varying facets of feminine strength and survival.
Author Bio
Alice Hoffman
Hoffman is the daughter of a real estate salesman and a social worker. When they divorced, she was raised by her mother on Long Island. A voracious reader, Hoffman has had a lifelong interest in magic and fairy tales, and her reading has had an obvious effect on her own writing, which tends to incorporate fantasy and myth. She has a B.A. from Adelphi College and an M.F.A. from Stanford.


"Hoffman put years of research into THE DOVEKEEPERS, and at times the story slows from a scholar's desire to dwell on details of custom or ritual. But for those like me who'll follow the novelist anywhere, that pacing becomes its own powerful incantation." - Lisa Schwarzbaum 09/28/2011

Product Attributes

Product attributeeBooks:   Kobo
Product attributeBook Format:   Paperback
Product attributeNumber of Pages:   0505
Product attributePublisher:   Scribner Book Company
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