Book Beginnings has a new home and is now hosted by Katy at a Few More Pages.
I am currently reading The Lemon Tree: An Arab, A Jew and the Heart of the Middle East by Sandy Tolan. Last month my MUS Moms book group read Mornings in Jenin by Susan Abulhawa, which we all loved. In keeping with the theme of the Israel-Palestine conflict we decided to read the Lemon Tree. This is great for me as both books count for my Middle East Reading Challenge. Here are the opening lines of Lemon Tree:
"The young Arab man approached a mirror in the washroom of Israel's West Jerusalem bus station. Bashir Khairi stood alone before a row of porcelain basins and leaned forward, regarding himself. He turned his head slightly, left to right and back again. He smoothed his hair, nudged his tie, pinched his clean-shaven face. He was making certain all of this was real. For nearly two decades, since he was six years old, Bashir had been preparing for this journey. It was the breath, the currency, the bread of his family, of nearly every family he knew. It was what everyone talked about, all the time: return. In exile, there was little else worth dreaming of."
So far I am really enjoying the book. It's written like a novel, but is a true story of a house built by an Arab family. A Jewish family moved in when the Arabs were forced out. In 1967 the Arab young man returns to the house and strikes up a friendship with the Jewish young woman who lives there. The book follows their friendship over decades.