The Book of Zev

Mar­i­lyn Ida Horowitz
  • Review
By – June 5, 2015

The Book of Zev, an urban fan­ta­sy, is a page-turn­ing psy­cho­log­i­cal thriller and also a ten­der, off­beat love sto­ry: slight­ly sur­re­al, Dali-esque, mys­ti­cal, and mag­i­cal, yet the events in the nov­el could be tomor­row’s headlines.

Psy­chic — or, more accu­rate­ly, nebi, (prophet) — Gwydio does not actu­al­ly change the world. He orches­trates peo­ple into posi­tion and explains their free choic­es. Zev, a dis­il­lu­sioned Ortho­dox Jew, and Sarah, a chef who cooks strict­ly kosher upon request — though she her­self is no longer of faith, and even hates God” — will become unusu­al allies in an unusu­al adventure.

Through a mix-up — or is it? — Sarah comes across a record­ing that Gwydion pre­pared of his ses­sion with Zev, set­ting into motion a roller coast­er ride of thrills, romance, pol­i­tics, and intrigue. Mem­o­ries from child­hood, events of the past, even from bib­li­cal times, influ­ence action. This time they will get it right. In the process of sav­ing the world, or at least the Unit­ed States and Israel, the char­ac­ters grow into their des­tinies, learn to accept respon­si­bil­i­ty, and even­tu­al­ly, redemption.

The writ­ing is con­fi­dent, clear, con­cise, and lyri­cal. The author respects and cares about her char­ac­ters, coax­ing the read­er to empathize as well. Mar­i­lyn Ida Horowitz presents a lit­tle gem, leav­ing the read­er wish­ing for more to come.

Relat­ed Content:

Sydelle Shamah has been lead­ing book club dis­cus­sions for many years, and is a pub­lished sci­ence fic­tion writer. She was pres­i­dent of the Ruth Hyman Jew­ish Com­mu­ni­ty Cen­ter of Mon­mouth Coun­ty, NJ.

Discussion Questions