How to Understand Israel in 60 Days or Less

How to Understand Israel in 60 Days or Less

Book - 2016
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"Sarah Glidden is a progressive Jewish American twenty-something who is both vocal and critical of Israeli politics in the Holy Land. When a debate with her mother prods her to sign up for a Birthright Israel tour, Glidden expects to find objective facts to support her strong opinions. During her two weeks in Israel, Glidden takes advantage of the opportunity to ask the people she meets about the fraught and complex issue of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, but their answers only lead her to question her own take on the conflict. Simple linework and gorgeous watercolors spotlight Israel's countryside, urban landscapes, and religious landmarks. With straightforward sincerity, lovingly observed anecdotes, and a generous dose of self-deprecating humor, How to Understand Israel in 60 Days or Less is accessible while retaining Glidden's distinctive perspective. Over the course of this touching memoir, Glidden comes to terms with the idea that there are no easy answers to the world's problems, and that is okay."-- Provided by publisher.
Publisher: Montréal, Québec : Drawn & Quarterly, 2016
Edition: First Drawn & Quarterly edition
Copyright Date: ©2016
ISBN: 9781770462533
Branch Call Number: 956.9405 GLIDDEN
Characteristics: 206 pages : colour illustrations, colour portrait ; 23 cm


From Library Staff

When Sarah Glidden decided to take her birthright tour of Israel, she thought she knew what to expect. But when her perceived notions clash with experience, she is forced to reconsider everything she once believed.

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Mar 01, 2019

Although not normally a graphic novel reader, I enjoyed this one. The angsty and indecisive main character is relatable. Unfortunately, I know very little about Israel so have no idea whether her take on her trip there actually captures the "real" Israel or not! Perhaps because she herself wavered so much in her own feelings about Israel, we should understand that one book, one trip is not enough to understand the country's many complex issues.

Jul 14, 2017

Reading this cleverly written and illustrated graphic novel memoir not only opened my eyes to the "real" Israel (i.e., not what we Westerners are normally led to see in the media or American politics, rather a perspective of what Israelis experience in their ordinary, daily lives), but it too ignited an intrigue of a country and culture I wouldn't normally find myself exploring; shortly after finishing the book, I even found myself looking at plane tickets to Tel Aviv! Suffice it to say, this Graphic Novel is an excellent way to experience another culture, as seen through the eyes of a progressive Jew--who is dating an Arab--on her Birth Right Trip, or "Taglit". In the author's dichotomic struggle between her western, progressive beliefs, and her Jewish identity and heritage, set against the backdrop of ideological polarization, the convoluted arguments and long-held misconceptions plaguing this area of the world begin to unravel. As we begin to see the world through a new, less opaque lens, we can begin to question our own deeply-ingrained views and see not Israelis and Palestinians, good or bad, but instead human beings seeking what we all seek: love, comfort, and a good life.

Mar 11, 2017

Engrossing read. Highly recommended.

shokolit Jan 21, 2016

A very enjoyable read.

Apr 07, 2015

I think this book is great. It is honest and real. It's a personal memoir -- the artist's own experience explored and shared in a way that felt deep and personal to me. In contrast to other comments, I found the artwork very appealing. I have lived in Israel for several years and really enjoyed seeing how she captures the visual experience, often in fine detail. I think she did a great job of bringing out the complexities on both the personal and political levels. I highly recommend this book.

Oct 01, 2014

Very well organized, good colourful drawings, thoughtful narrative and dialogue.

Aug 03, 2013

I found this book to be very young. young in the sense that the illustrations have a doodling quality, the level of emotions real but still seem to come from an author who is wet behind the ears in life. this is all self admitted even in the title which is more of a sarcastic glimpse of whats to come. As by the end of the book, a lot about the region is explained but because of the deep history and entrenched beliefs regarding the subject, the author comes away realizing that despite her overwrought attempts to understand the conflict and her history, she finds her firm preconceptions shadowed in doubt and ambivalence.

SkycycleX2 Jan 23, 2012

I was disappointed in this book because I read it based on some good reviews that it received. The artwork is mediocre and often just too awkward to be appealing. I didn't like looking at the drawing. If it all was on the level of the cover it would have been great but it rarely is. The story, too, is not particularly engaging. The artist takes her readers on her journey to learn about Israel. In the end we come away with a little better understanding of the country but no clear answers to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. I understand that might be too much to expect but I don't think it's too much to expect at least an emotional journey. In my opinion, the book didn't deliver that, either.


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