The Collaborator of Bethlehem by Matt Beynon Rees
rating: 4 of 5 stars
I heard an interview with Matt Beynon Rees on NPR the other day and I am intrigued by his Palestinian detective, Omar Yussef. I like to read well written books about places I may never see. The Yacobian Building was a favorite of mine (and a fave film, too). I look forward to getting to this book and the sequels.
I have just finished the book and I must say I liked it a lot. Rees paints a lush and detailed canvas of Palestine. Bleak yet captivating. His character development is spot-on and his attention to detail is fantastic.
Matt Beynon Rees is the former Jerusalem bureau chief for Time magazine and it shows in his detailed perspective on the political realities of the Middle East. His prose range from the protean to the stunning. Here is a favorite passage of mine:
Yet the gunmen thrived, they whose accomplishments and talents were of the basest nature, they who would have been obliterated had there been law and order and honor in the town. Perhaps Bethlehem was there town after all, and it was Omar Yussef who was the outlaw interloper here, peddling contraband decency and running a clandestine trade in morality.
If you are at all interested in this part of the world, then this book should be on your list.
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