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Sunday, February 8, 2009

People of the Book (4/5)

People of the Book (4/5)

People of the Book is inspired by the true story of the Hebrew codex. This book has been protected through numerous war times. People repeatedly risked their lives for this book and its safety.
This novel jumps from location to location and time period to time period. This illustrates the life cycle of this book and that its power and sacredness spans time and place. There are many characters in this book, which can sometimes be a bit confusing, but they are all interwoven so in the end, it all works out.
There is a parallel story of Hanna, a book conservationist, in modern time. Hanna has been hired to restore this codex and as she examines its layers its story begins to unveil itself. Hanna is a strong female character. She has a dysfunctional relationship with her mother, an important medical doctor. Hanna finds herself, in many ways, as this book progresses. These discoveries empower her more.
Horrifying images of hatred and holocaust are portrayed throughout this book. The violence and unfounded hatred is disturbing to readers. It should be. The fact that this hatred is still happening today is something that we need to take notice of. One will not forget this book quickly. It will haunt readers for some time after they close the cover.
Brooks has a powerful writing style, creating strong characters, an intense sense of setting and a powerful conflict that can only be true to life. Readers will care for and about these characters. The settings are so well described that readers will feel like they are there, witnessing first hand the acts of violence. The conflict will rip through the hearts of readers. This book would be a great one for discussion. It could be used in a high school Global History class right up through adult book groups. This book spans the ages.

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