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Random Review: Novel about Mideast to be discussed

Random Review: Novel about Mideast to be discussed

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Rabbi Ariel Stone of Portland Congregation Shir Tikvah will review the novel "Apeirogon" by Colum McCann as part of the Friends of the Library Random Review series of book reviews. The event will take place at noon Wednesday online via GoToWebinar. It is free but registration is required: https://bit.ly/randomreviewregistration.

Apeirogon is a remarkably powerful and unusual “hybrid novel” by National Book Award-winning writer McCann. The author tells the true stories of the tragic deaths of two daughters; a 13-year-old Israeli girl killed by a Palestinian suicide bomber and a 10-year-old Palestinian girl shot by an Israeli soldier. The book was inspired by the close friendship forged between their grieving fathers. Both men dedicated the remainder of their lives to travelling together worldwide to speak about their personal experiences and advocate for the necessity of a peaceful solution to the occupation.

Through the ingenious structure of 1,001 short chapters McCann creates a complexity of detail about the lives of the fathers and their daughters interspersed with a wide range of snippets of tangential facts and stories. The sum of this rich mix of perspectives turns out to make a most affecting whole. The review may be an opportunity to gain some insight into one of the world’s most intractable problems.

In 2002 Stone was one of the founders of Portland Congregation Shir Tikvah, which she serves as rabbi. She created and guides TischPDX which supports emerging Jewish leadership on Portland’s East Side. She was ordained by Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion in 1991 and completed a doctoral degree in Jewish studies at the Spertus Institute in Chicago in 2010.

Stone is a graduate of the Mandel Leadership Institute in Jerusalem. She served as an assistant rabbi and educational director at a Reform congregation in Miami and worked in conjunction with the World Union of Progressive Judaism in Kiev, Ukraine. Stone served as president of the Oregon Board of Rabbis. In 2017 she convened Portland’s Interfaith Clergy Resistance and in 2019 helped to establish the Portland chapter of Never Again Action.

Up next: Coming up on Dec. 9  One Long River of Song by Brian Doyle will be reviewed by a panel that includes David James Duncan, David Grube, Kathleen Dean Moore. The event is scheduled for 90 minutes instead of the program's usual one hour.

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