In this third book of the Blue Thread series, we meet Meryem Zarfati who has been injured in the big earthquake which hits Portland in the year 2059. During the quake Meryem’s mother is listed as missing but her body is not found, and due to housing issues, Meryem’s grandmother and great aunt move in with her along with some additional tenants. Her grandmother and great aunt are of Vietnamese and black origin, adopted by the Zarfati family as children. Each Miriam in the Zarfati family has passed along the special tallit with the blue thread in it that allows all the Miriams of the family to travel through time and space to help others in times of need. In order to search for her mother, Meryem volunteers at an agency every month which searches for missing people. Bandon, a housing activist who is wanted by the police, joins the family when he brings a friend’s goat to “service” Meryem’s goat and he moves in, as well.
Once Meryem finds the tallit, Serach, daughter of the ancient Asher, appears and takes Meryem to 16th century Ottoman Empire. Serach and Meryem together help a young Jewish slave girl obtain her freedom in the 16th century while in the 21st century Meryem, her grandmother and her aunt find housing for the homeless workers at the rescue center and, together with her lawyer, Meryem is able to get Bandon off the persona-non-grata list of Portland. Past and future come together in unexpected ways at every turn of the plot.
The story weaves together racial issues, homelessness, slavery, personal loss, the ethics of government intervention, adoption and much more along the time and space continuum through the saying on the tallit, Zedek Zedek tirdof, Justice, Justice you shall pursue.
Recommended for ages 9 – 15.