THE SHEPHERD OF ABU KUSH by Louise A. Stinetorf


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Because of conflicting cultural interpretations of the law, communications break down between the inhabitants of Abu Kush, an Arab village, and a group of Jewish settlers. The land purchased in good faith by the Jews is still occupied when they arrive to settle. Shocked to discover they had sold their village, the Arabs are forced to evacuate their homes for the dismal surroundings of a refugee camp. It is here that Khall, the young Arab shepherd boy, knows hunger and hardship for the first time. Luckily, an English major, fascinated by Khall's pet falcon, permits the boy to hunt game for his family and friends. On one such expedition, Khall wanders into Abu Kush and secretly observes an inept Jewish shepherd mishandle a flock. Despite his hatred for the Jews, Khall steals back at night to rescue the animals. He is rewarded when the settlers offer him food and care in a time of crisis. Sharing his method of sheepherding with the inexperienced boy in exchange for knowledge of modern farming, Khall comes to know and enjoy his new neighbors. The plot takes on fantastic dimensions when the Arab boy is awarded a passport, a steamship ticket and a scholarship to an American school through the efforts of all the people he helped and befriended- the refugees, the Englishmen, the Jews. Yet this is not the only flaw. Miss Stinetorf has chosen a unique theme whose potentialities for depth and development go unrealized in her weak characterizations and unconvincing situations.

Pub Date: Feb. 15th, 1962
Publisher: Coward-McCann