Ruchama's husband, Simon Yisrael Feuerman, will be reading from her book In the Courtyard of the Kabbalist on October 10, 2013 at 7:30pm as part of the NJ Literary Artists Fellowship Showcase.
The reading will take place at
in the Chase Room
of the Madison Public Library
39 Keep Street
Madison, NJ 07940
Click here for directions
There is a suggested donation of $10. All tickets will be available at the door on the evening of the readings. No advanced ticket sales.
Set in Jerusalem, In the Courtyard of the Kabbalist is the story of former Lower East Side haberdasher Isaac, now an assistant to an elderly rabbi; Mustafa, a physically deformed Arab janitor who works on the Temple Mount; and the beautiful Tamar, a young American woman searching for a righteous man. As these characters – Muslim and Jewish; prophets and lost souls -- move through their world, they are never sure if they will fall prey to the cruel tricks of luck or be sheltered by a higher power.
The novel is a thriller, a courtship tale, and a gentle clash between civilizations.
Ruchama King Feuerman was born in Nashville, grew up in Virginia and Maryland, and when she was seventeen, bought a one-way ticket to Israel to seek her spiritual fortune. She is half-Sephardic, half-Ashkenazic, and taught in Jerusalem for ten years. Seven Blessings (St. Martin’s Press), her celebrated first novel about match-making, earned her the praise of the Dallas Morning News and the New York Times for for “capturing the subtlety and magic of [Judaism’s] traditions,” and Kirkus Reviews dubbed Feuerman the “Jewish Jane Austen.” She wrote her second novel, In the Courtyard of the Kabbalist, with the help of grants from the Christopher Isherwood Foundation and New Jersey State Council on the Arts. The New York Review of Books (NYRB Lit) will be publishing her novel in September 2013. Publishers Weekly described her novel as “evocative… a belated coming-of-age novel...[Jerusalem] itself emerges as a character…depicted with a lyricism that contrasts with the area’s political tension….the novel [casts a] quiet, lovely mood.” Her stories and essays have appeared in many publications, including the New York Times, and she is a winner of the 2012 Moment Magazine Short Fiction prize, selected by the novelist Walter Mosley.
Researching In the Courtyard of the Kabbalist led Ruchama to elderly kabbalists, Israeli ex-convicts, Arab construction workers, Temple Mount policemen, and soup kitchens, among other places. Much of her fiction happens in Jerusalem, a city, she finds, where outrageous stories are handed to you, and then you have to tone them down to make them believable.
To learn more about Ruchama, visit her website.
Click here to read more or purchase her books.
Recommended books from Ruchama:
Brick Lane, by Monica Ali (novel)
The First Seven Years, by Bernard Malamud (short story, from The Complete Short Stories)
A Fine Balance, by Rohiton Mistry (novel)
Excellent Women, by Barbara Pym (novel)
A Tale of Love and Darkness, by Amos Oz (memoir)
Papa’s Books, by Jay Neugeoboren (short story)
The Book of Genesis (not by Leon Uris)
The Third Bank of the River: Joao Guimaraes Rosa (short story)
My Father on the Verge of Disgrace, by John Updike (short story)
Guests on a Winter Night, by I.B. Singer (memoir)
Kaaterskill Falls, by Allegra Goodman (novel)
Check out our 4 Questions with Ruchama King Feuerman interview.