Wednesday, April 26, 2006
I got a rather special copy of this book to read.. it was from a friend i met in hyderabad.. he was a collector and so was his mom.. the copy of exodus that they had actually belonged to his mom and aunty had had it for a really long time.. he's been meaning to get a new edition of the book bu its off the press and there are no new editions! so i got to read this wonderful story from a rather old and battered book with crumply pages.. but reading from such a precious book is an experience in itself!! like Roots, the book that i have already written about, this is also a tale of struggle and agony over many years...still in a totally different environment..
In this book, we are taken to Palestine. Yes, its about the Jews. The story revolves around a Christian nurse, Kitty Fermont. She falls in love with Ari Ben Cannan, who is a very determined leader of the Jewish underground. It is set against the bachground of opression of jews in europe and the misreable plight of those forced into concentration camps. With all the injustice and cruel torture in the background, the story revolves around the lives of these two young people. He is totally dedicated to his cause..his main aim being to bring the jews out of their torture caps and take them to the promised land- palestine. In the course of the novel, kitty meets a young girl karen who is a refugee. She grows very fond of the girl and in no time karen becomes like a daughter to her. This is the time for her to realize that both the people who she loves more than anything in the world would never give her the first priority.They are completely committed to working for a country for their people inspite of any danger. She is torn between the decision to move with them or leave them both and finally decides to go with them. starting life in the "promised life" is not a bed of roses and the jews have to continuously fight against bandit groups etc etc..
the life of the jews is brought out beautifully in this book and i learnt quite a bit about how they were ill treated and tortured..the stories of the "ghettos" really tore my heart out..:( the book ended with a rather non-optimistic tone.. it didnt have the "and they lived happily ever after" kind ending and i usually hate books like that.. i felt so let down by the book for a while after seeing it end soo abruptly..but then thinking about it now.. the book has been soo true to the jews and been soo honest in its portrayal of thier picture..anything but for the truth as the ending would be a let down to them and to the cause of the book right??