Letters to My Palestinian Neighbor by Yossi Klein Halevi

Letters to My Palestinian Neighbor

New York Times bestseller "A profound and original book, the work of a gifted thinker."--Daphne Merkin, The Wall Street JournalAttempting to break the agonizing impasse between Israelis and Palestinians, the Israeli commentator and award-winning author of Like Dreamers directly addresses his Palestinian neighbors in this taut and provocative book, empathizing with Palestinian suffering and longing for reconciliation as he explores how the confl...

Details Letters to My Palestinian Neighbor

TitleLetters to My Palestinian Neighbor
Release DateMay 15th, 2018
GenreNonfiction, Literature, Jewish, Cultural, Israel, Politics, History, Religion, Judaism

Reviews Letters to My Palestinian Neighbor

  • Naama
    For me, there wasn’t much new in YKH’s words – part history part musing - they seemed very familiar. Yet, I was impressed by the eloquence with which he put together all those heartfelt thoughts and feelings. YKH’s letters, in nutshell, seemed to boil down to the following pleas:Please recognize that we are a nation, not just a religion, but that either way, Israel is an inextricable part of our peoplehood and religion. Please recognize o...
  • Dee
    I gave up on this book about halfway through - I thought the author was patronizing and self-serving. Although he claims to want a "dialogue" with his Palestinian neighbors, what he really wants is to preach at them as to why he (Jewish people) deserve to live in the entire land of Israel (while maybe making some minuscule "accommodation" to the Palestinians who have been live there for several millennia. He tries to justify the Jewish connection...
  • Kiwi Begs2Differ ✎
    I’ll admit that it was with some skepticism that I picked up this book, but am very happy to have read it. I applaud the author for his efforts in extending a hand in peace to his Palestinian neighbor. Halevi’s 10 open letters seems to me a genuine conciliatory gesture, when he says:Neither of us is likely to convince the other of each side’s narrative. Each of us lives within a story so deeply rooted in our being, so defining of our collec...
  • Jeanne
    To doubt the possibility of reconciliation is to limit God’s power, the possibility of miracle—especially in this land. The Torah commands me, “Seek peace and pursue it”—even when peace appears impossible, perhaps especially then. (p. 19). My family has lived in the US for fewer than 125 years, yet Ireland (where most of my father's family comes from) and Germany (my mother's family) barely touch me. My grandfather, whose older sisters ...
  • Cam
    In Letters to My Palestinian Neighbor, Yossi Klein Halevi intends to break the silence between Israelis and Palestinians. The book details different viewpoints from both sides of the conflict, as well as the author’s own viewpoint and personal story, all in an attempt to explain the Israeli side of the conflict to Palestinians, while staying sympathetic to both sides. The author, being Jewish and living in Israel, takes a stance that is more in...
  • Laila Kanon
    I was profoundly moved by this book. Many times, I had to put it down, just to breathe or else just let a tear or two drops onto my cheeks as I read between pages. This author bares his heart and soul to his “neighbour” something that involve vulnerability with the hope that his neighbour will ignore her/his prejudice and reads it with goodwill and openness. Some issues that I want to address in this book: 1) Why address the Arab neighbour as...
  • Claire
    After hearing an interview with the author, I got the book. The interview was better than the book.One strength of the book was insight in some moments of what it feels like to be a Jew, what 2000 years of longing for return to "Zion" mean to at least one man. One weakness is the residual of rationalization and self justification that intrudes, more early on than later.(Disclaimer: I am neither Jewish nor Palestinian)In the early chapters there w...
  • Kats
    There are few things in the world today more complicated than establishing and keeping peace in the Middle East (though we were led to believe that Jared Kushner was going to sort it out in a matter of weeks, ha!). The Jewish-Palestinian situation in Israel has certainly had more downs than ups over the last 60 years, but Halevi's collection of open letters is as educational as it is thought-provoking and inspiring. It's truly a peace offering; a...
  • Howard Jaeckel
    Yossi Klein Halevi’s humanity is evident on every page of “Letters to My Palestinian Neighbor.” He is a good man and a beautiful writer. But I cannot agree, as some have said, that he is an original thinker. For anyone who has closely followed the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and knows something of its history, it requires no particular originality to recognize that the claims of both sides have substantial call on justice. As an American J...
  • Ilana
    An experienced journalist, religious Jew supporter of the two-state solution with knowledge of the Palestinian society and Islam, Yossi Klein Halevi wrote a wise book aimed at explaining Zionism to the 'Palestinian Neighbor'. In a poetic language, infused with wisdom and moderation, he is offering his version, neither right or left. The book - that will soon be translated into Arabic - is a confession - 'sharing my faith and my story' - from the ...
  • Peter Eckstein
    This is what I wrote on Yossi Klein Halevi's Facebook page. I just finished reading the book. As I read it, my initial cynicism evaporated. You present the Zionist/Jewish dream eloquently. I heard your interview on Unorthodox and understand that you had two audiences in mind - Palestinian and American Jewish. I pray that a heartfelt response will come from a representative of the Palestinian people. However what is crucial is that this book prese...
  • Patty Shlonsky
    Letters to my Palestinian Neighbor is a thoughtful and thought provoking narrative on the importance of Israel to Jews and Palestinians, the need for a two state solution and the complexity of the Palestinian Israeli relationship. The book provides some historical and contemporary perspective and made me want to learn more about the history described in the book. More importantly the book does an excellent job stressing the importance of understa...
  • Renee
    Sincere, imploring, and introspective. I relished the beautiful writing in this series of letters & empathized with both Israelis and Palestinians as I learned more about the conflict that grieves the two cultures/nations.
  • Charlotte
    I’ve never felt such a variety of reactions to a book. At times I empathized with his views, at other times I completely disagreed with him. But through this book I came away with a deeper understanding of the Palestinian Israeli conflict that seemed to be grounded in real practical solutions.
  • Sleepless
    So I found this in the library in my Jewish summer camp and finished it (can we talk about how all my campers read all the time and I love them all?). Anyway, I found the writing beautiful. It's a succinct description of the Israeli side of the conflict, I recommend this for people who aren't familiar with it. Other than that, this book felt like a missed opportunity. One of my favorite books (and possibly the best I've read about Israel and Juda...
  • Cindy H.
    I found this book eloquent, genuine and very easy to comprehend. Mr. HaLevi is upfront with his readers, staring he is representing his Jewish point of view but he wishes to engage in a real dialogue. I read the new paperback edition that includes several responses from Palestinian readers and other Arab neighbors, so I was able to “hear” from both “sides”. I applaud the initiative Yossi Klein HaLevi undertakes and I respect what all voic...
  • Jennifer
    I discovered Yossi Klein Halevi's Letters...upon return from teaching English in Palestine. Why did you leave America to spend your summer vacation working in Bethlehem? “I needed to know Israeli reality not only from the headlines but from the back pages.” Little did I know that under the media’s cover stories on Israel lay a thick, rich, tumultuous text on the history of Palestine. Jesus grew up in Israel but He was born in Palestine. Fro...
  • Erika Dreifus
    Essential reading. Find my review on the My Machberet blog.
  • Margaret Klein
    This is one of the best books I have read on Israel, ever. Quite simply it is a love poem, written in the form of letters to his Palestinian neighbor who he can see from his porch. He manages to hold his audience throughout as he explains the complex history of Israel--both the land, the people and the state. Just 10 letters. Often with a focus on Jewish holidays. Tisha B'av (timing on this was perfect for me as we approach that next week) with i...
  • Ido
    This was an amazing book. Halevi has helped bring words to the very same thoughts I have been having for many years. He has really captured the very essence of the issue - neither side can see the other's story. While there is a strong group among Israelis who are willing and able to see the Palestinian narrative, the same cannot be said for the Palestinian side. I hope that Halevi is able to reach some on the other side who are willing to not ju...
  • Erika Dreifus
    Yes, I already own the hardcover. Yes, I've already read (and written about) the book. So why did I buy the paperback edition, and why am I taking the time to comment about the book again? Because the book remains essential reading, and because the new edition includes equally must-read responses from actual Palestinian (and some other Arab) readers.
  • Lovely Loveday
    Letters to My Palestinian Neighbor is a heart felt and insightful read that is sure to open your eyes on one of the most tragic divides in modern politics. A collection of beautiful poetic letters that are sure to warm your heart and open your eye helping you to understand the divide between the two.
  • Janet
    This is a short book that I recommend reading for anyone interested in the conflict between Israel and the Palestinians. I recommend it more strongly for anyone who feels vehemently partisan about one side or the other. Yossi Halevi is the sanest thinker on this I've ever heard. If any parts offend your sensibilities, please hear him out and finish the book.
  • Seth Kaplan
    This should be required reading for anybody who claims to understand Israel and Palestine. Takes a nuanced approach that forces the reader to examine preconceived notions and get out of their comfort zone in order to see any possible solution to this conflict. Even better in the second edition which includes some Palestinian and Arab response letters.
  • Alan LaPayover
    Yossi Klein Halevi always writes from the struggle within his soul to be true to his whole self and to be a mensch. We should all read this. It will not cure our ills, but it may help.
  • Julia
    I learned a lot about the Israeli/Palestinian history and conflict from this book.
  • Steve
    This hauntingly beautiful book is required reading for anyone who wants a deeper and more honest understanding of The Israeli Palestinian conflict, Israel, and Israelis
  • Alan
    I enjoyed reading this very sincere but sad book. Yossi Halevi lives in a house in Israel that overlooks a wall separating Israel from the West bank. He is a writer who has participated in several Arab-Israeli peace activities, including a trip with Jewish and Arab participants to Auschwitz. He is well-versed in the history of Israel as well as Arab-Israeli conflict. He wishes and prays for peace frequently as he looks over the Wall at his Palest...
  • Linda
    After just coming back from my first trip to Israel, I found this book to be very insightful. I had been thinking of many of these issues and the plight of all concerned. It should be read by all parties and by those of us who attempt to understand the complexity of the situation.