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A 17-year-old has a shallow religious epiphany followed by an equally shallow retreat from religion and political awakening. In the old days, Mia repeatedly assures us, she only wanted "to get high, make music and have sex." Now she's studying at a Jerusalem yeshiva; hoping for a spiritual reawakening, Mia has blindly decided she'll find it in Orthodox Judaism. Unfortunately, she connects neither with her classmates nor their religious or political beliefs. The more she learns about the ugly creation of Israel's national myth of a previously empty land being made green, the more barren she finds Orthodox Judaism. Her political self-education gets tangled up with her conviction that she is "sick of wearing ugly clothes," her disinterest in yeshiva studies and her lust for Andrew, the sexy guitar bum she meets in the streets of Jerusalem. The issues are vitally important, but the heroine's facile acceptance of a hot boy's pacifism is hardly convincing, the straw-man yeshiva students diminish the painful political realities and Mia just isn't likable enough to carry the tale. (Fiction. 12-13)

Pub Date: Nov. 1, 2010

ISBN: 978-1-55469-265-1

Page Count: 224

Publisher: Orca

Review Posted Online: Sept. 24, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 15, 2010

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