Popular author Harry Kemelman combines baffling crimes, fascinating characters, and rich Jewish tradition to create his best-selling mystery series. In Monday the Rabbi Took Off, an exhausted Rabbi David Small searches for relaxation in Israel, only to find himself in the midst of an explosive international incident. After six years of leading a challenging congregation, Rabbi Small is taking his dream vacation: three months in Jerusalem without any rabbinical duties. He is finally getting the rest he needs - until a new acquaintance is found dead after a bombing. Suddenly the savvy young Rabbi is up against the formidable Israeli intelligence and faceless Arab terrorists with murder on their minds. With Harry Kemelman's dramatic flair, you will feel as if you are walking the colorful streets of Jerusalem alongside the perceptive Rabbi Small. George Guidall - personally approved for this unabridged recording by the author's estate - skillfully breathes life into the ordinary people caught in extraordinary situations.
©1972 Harry Kemelman (P)1998 Recorded Books
The Rabbi's sojourn in the Holy Land isn't all milk and honey, how could it be? Quite apart from the intrigue of the crime, it is instructive to look back a few decades (to a time I remember as a teenager) on the world tensions, politics, trouble in the Middle East of those days and compare with today's situation! I went on pilgrimage to the Holy Land a few years ago, so I found particularly interesting to note developments in Jerusalem and elsewhere-some good, some not at all good- and to hear the impressions of other, earlier visitors as expressed by the Smalls, the journalist and his student son, and a couple of Barnard's Crossing's unsubtle businessmen.
The narration is well done, and fortunately the entire series has the same reader, thus maintaining continuity.
"Interesting mystery, almost incidental to story."
The Rabbi takes a leave of absence to spend 3 months in Jerusalem. The book was publshed in 1972, so was written in the period between the 6-day war (1967) and the Yom Kippur War (1973). This was around the time I first visited Israel, so I experienced a certain nostalgia in the listening. Among other things, the story dramatizes the tension between the sabras and non-religious Jews and the strictly observant Hasidim and other religious sects, a tension that has only become more exacerbated with time, especially in Jerusalem and environs. In this story, it is dramatized mostly by conflicts between parents and children. The mystery itself concerns the murder of an auto trader, apparently by a terrorist bomb. As usual, the Rabbi eventually solves the crime for the police, seemingly by logic, although I found it hard to believe he could have discerned all that he told just by a careful examination of some of the evidence. Despite my disappointment, I don't regret the time spent listening. The narration by George Guidall is excellent, as usual.
less trivia and some mystery or detective content
good reader, boring book
very misleading, the book was described as a mystery but it is so full of irrelevant interpersonal conversations and trivial details that have nothing to do with a crime or mystery, it is a waist of time
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