I Am Forbidden: A Novel

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A family is torn apart by fierce belief and private longing in this unprecedented journey deep inside the most insular Hasidic sect, the Satmar.

In 1939, five-year-old Josef witnesses the murder of his family by the Romanian Iron Guard. He is taken in by a Gentile maid, who raises him as her own son. Five years later, Josef rescues a young girl, Mila, whose parents are killed in the wake of Nazi deportations. Josef helps Mila find safety with Zalman Stern, a leader in the Satmar community, in whose home Mila is raised as a sister to Zalman’s daughter, Atara. The two girls form a fierce bond, but as they mature, Atara feels trapped by the restraints of Jewish fundamentalism, while Mila embraces her faith and her role as a respected young woman in her community. When Josef returns and chooses Mila to be his bride, she eagerly strives to be an ideal wife, but a desperate choice after ten years of childless marriage threatens to separate her from everything—and everyone—she cherishes.

A beautifully crafted, emotionally gripping story of what happens when unwavering love, unyielding law, and centuries of tradition collide, I Am Forbidden announces the arrival of an extraordinarily gifted new voice and opens a startling window on a world long closed to most of us, until now.
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About the author

ANOUK MARKOVITS grew up in France, in an ultra-orthodox Satmar home. She attended a religious seminary in England instead of high school, and left the fold at the age of nineteen to avoid an arranged marriage. She went on to receive a bachelor of science from Columbia University, a master of architecture from Harvard, and a PhD in Romance Studies from Cornell. Translations of I Am Forbidden are forthcoming in a dozen countries. Markovits's first novel, Pur Coton, written in French, was published by Gallimard.
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Additional Information

Publisher
Hogarth
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Published on
May 8, 2012
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Pages
336
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ISBN
9780307984753
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Features
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Language
English
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Genres
Fiction / Historical / General
Fiction / Jewish
Fiction / Literary
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Content protection
This content is DRM protected.
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Read aloud
Available on Android devices
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Eligible for Family Library

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