The Dovekeepers

The Dovekeepers

A Novel

Book - 2011 | 1st Scribner hardcover ed.
Average Rating:
Rate this:
53
1
Over five years in the writing,

The Dovekeepers is Alice Hoffman's most ambitious and mesmerizing novel, a tour de force of imagination and research, set in ancient Israel.

In 70 C.E., nine hundred Jews held out for months against armies of Romans on Masada, a mountain in the Judean desert. According to the ancient historian Josephus, two women and five children survived. Based on this tragic and iconic event, Hoffman's novel is a spellbinding tale of four extraordinarily bold, resourceful, and sensuous women, each of whom has come to Masada by a different path. Yael's mother died in childbirth, and her father, an expert assassin, never forgave her for that death. Revka, a village baker's wife, watched the horrifically brutal murder of her daughter by Roman soldiers; she brings to Masada her young grandsons, rendered mute by what they have witnessed. Aziza is a warrior's daughter, raised as a boy, a fearless rider and an expert marksman who finds passion with a fellow soldier. Shirah, born in Alexandria, is wise in the ways of ancient magic and medicine, a woman with uncanny insight and power.

The lives of these four complex and fiercely independent women intersect in the desperate days of the siege. All are dovekeepers, and all are also keeping secrets--about who they are, where they come from, who fathered them, and whom they love. The Dovekeepers is Alice Hoffman's masterpiece.
Publisher: New York : Scribner, 2011.
Edition: 1st Scribner hardcover ed.
ISBN: 9781451617474
Branch Call Number: FIC Hoffm
Characteristics: 504 pages : map
Alternative Title: Dove keepers

Opinion

From Library Staff

A beautifully written book about a group of incredible women. Based on true historical events.


From the critics


Community Activity

Comment

Add a Comment
e
EljayJohnson
Jul 20, 2019

This novel is simply exquisitely written. There were times I loved it, but most of the time I found it too overwrought for my taste. It was wonderful reading something about this time period, the first century C.E.

r
RickaKohnstamm
Apr 27, 2019

Recommendation: MPR's The Thread

a
Anita_Dickey
Sep 15, 2018

I read this book to fulfil the goal read a book about feminism. it was kindof neat timing for me as i'm also reading the old testament. (it takes place in the time period between the old and new testaments.) i love biblical fiction like this. it really fuels the imagination as you read your scriptures.

m
Memawrayne
May 12, 2018

It would have been better if there wasn't so much repetition of religious practices and superstitions. The story and approach could have been much better with less of the of the silly practices and beliefs.

l
Lotushead
Apr 08, 2018

Based on true history, four women manage to survive against all odds. There is both beauty and heartbreak in this story.

f
fred98115
Jan 14, 2018

This harrowing tale of four women who are at Masada when it falls to the Romans is a tad tedious. Masada is a key event in Israeli history. Yet, the focus of the book is on their lives and transgressions before the last day. The book is overly long and gives short thrift to the climatic real life ending.

g
Ghettostone
Dec 14, 2017

"Dove Keepers" by Alice Hoffman is one terrific adventure story based on historical accounts during ancient times in old Isreal. The "Dove Keepers" is a story about four heroic women, all different from each other, one is a warrior, one is a healer, one is a mystic, and one is leader. The Jewish people are on the run from the Roman army that has invaded and is now destroying the nation. The escape is lead by families who walk through the desert searching for a safe haven locate on top of a mountain. As the families settle in to their new surroundings each person assumes a position within the community that would add to their survival. The dove keepers are persons who care for birds. Doves lay eggs which provides food to help sustain the group. As time passes, relationships form, young girls become young women, hormones start to kick in and love blooms. The rules and traditions of Jewish Culture are less important when your on the run! "Dove Keepers" is an exciting story that keeps the reader entertained and riveted til the very end. Full of outstanding scenic descriptions, well developed characters you want to know more about and action that take your mind's eye into uncharted territory. A must read. Already a feature film I can't wait to read it again.

Highly recommended!

Ghettostone Publications Editor/Chief
www.ghettostone.com

BEST SELLERS BOOK CLUB -Leader

f
febechiarelli
Nov 12, 2017

Loved this book! In fact reading was ruined for me for a bit because this was so fascinating and captivating.

ArapahoeTatyana Jun 13, 2017

This novel is set in ancient Israel, when 900 Jews held Masada for months against Roman armies. The story is based on the tragic event when warriors for freedom fought against trained soldiers. it is a mesmerizing story of courage seen through the eyes of the four extraordinary women, each holding to their own secrets and beliefs. Alice Hoffman's masterpiece is a testament to the human spirit.

TSCPL_Miranda Apr 05, 2017

An unforgettable novel! Powerful and dangerous women. The feminine aspect of God. Mysticism, destiny, history.

View All Comments

Age Suitability

Add Age Suitability
b
blue_dolphin_3159
Jul 30, 2014

blue_dolphin_3159 thinks this title is suitable for 12 years and over

Summary

Add a Summary

There are no summaries for this title yet.

Notices

Add Notices

There are no notices for this title yet.

Quotes

Add a Quote

There are no quotes for this title yet.

Explore Further

Browse by Call Number

Recommendations

Subject Headings

  Loading...

Find it at VPL

  Loading...
[]
[]
To Top