The Kabbalist – Yoram Katz
In 1270, the Book of Zohar, a foundational book of Kabbalah, is published amidst a controversy. Is it an ancient text or an elaborate forgery? When Crusaders’ Acre falls to the Sultan in 1291, a remarkable chain of events brings two ancient scrolls into the possession of Yaakov Ben Shlomo, a Jewish refugee. In Revolutionary France, 1798, before a young cavalry officer sails with General Bonaparte to the Middle East, he is assigned a secret mission by his father. In 2006, when Superintendent Yossi Luria of Haifa Police is assigned to handle a homicide of a monk, he is not yet aware that this case is going to change his life and career. Four years later, a young Frenchwoman steps into the office of Luria, by now a disillusioned private detective. Jean de Charney has found a 200-year old letter in the basement of her family’s Normandy estate and has come to Israel to pursue an intriguing family mystery. The two quickly find out that the ancient mystery is still claiming lives in the 21st century. Their quest leads them through twists and turns, and acquaints them with the mystical doctrine of Kabbalah. What they discover affects their personal lives as well as puts commonly accepted truths in a completely new perspective. “The Kabbalist” is set against a rich historical tapestry, spanning 2,000 years in old and new Israel – a birthplace of religious and mystical doctrines, and the arena for numerous events which have shaped civilization. “The Kabbalist” puts the history and meaning of Kabbalah in a new, astonishing perspective, much like “The Da Vinci Code” did to Christianity. (via Goodreads)
My Take: Kabbalist
My interest in this book had more to do with history of the Templar Knights, which I find fascinating. And the bonus was also reading a version of the history of the Chosen People, the Jews. The author has cleverly juxtaposed two narratives; the rich tapestry of history dating back to the Roman Occupation of Palestine and the story of Yossi Luria and Jean de Charney set in the very recent past. However, whilst the historical narrative kept me engrossed, I found the storyline of the adventures of Yossi and Jean quite boring and just good for practicing speed reading. To much effort on the part of the author to ape ‘The Da Vinci Code.’ Read only if you are history buff.
We’re taking part in the Blogging From A to Z April Challenge.