All the Rivers
Bestselling writer Dorit Rabinyan, author of Persian Brides and Strand of a Thousand Pearls, talks about her work, in particular her new novel All the Rivers. Her story – of trying to bridge the gaps between Israelis and Palestinians – was barred from the Israeli school curriculum, reportedly turned down as its subject matter risked damaging the ‘identity of the nation’.
A chance encounter in New York brings two strangers together: Liat is a translation student, Hilmi a talented young painter. Together they explore the city, share fantasies, jokes and homemade meals and fall in love. There is only one problem: Liat is from Israel, Hilmi from Palestine. Keeping their deepening relationship secret, the two lovers build an intimate universe for two in this city far from home. But outside reality can only be kept at bay for so long. After a tempestuous visit from Hilmi’s brother, cracks begin to form in the relationship and their points of difference – Liat’s military service, Hilmi’s hopes for Palestine’s future – threaten to overwhelm their shared present. When they return separately to their divided countries, Liat and Hilmi must decide whether to keep going, or let go.
A prize-winning bestseller, All the Rivers is the deeply affecting story of two people trying to unite across one of the most deeply riven borders in the world.
Image credit: Isaac Shokal