Reviewed by Presenting Lenore guest reviewer Jen Reichert
Ash and Bits have been irreversibly changed in childhood by the kidnapping of their little sister, Alena. Thirteen years later, Ash still blames himself for Alena’s abduction and looks for a new life as an Orthodox Jew in Isreal. Bits took a much different direction, and has become a real wild child. Until one day when their mother phones to say that Alena’s remains are finally discovered. Trying to reach Ash to no avail, Bits jumps on a plane to travel half way across the world in attempt to bring her brother home, to ensure that the family is together one last time.
After reading the back cover, I thought I would only be captivated by the somewhat mysterious lifestyles of Orthodox Judaism. Parallel to learning about the Orthodox Yeshivas, I was delighted to see the author give the female characters in the book a raw, disturbing and truthful portrayal of women seeking relationships to numb their pain. It was also refreshing to have enough information about Alena’s disappearance, yet spared of any gory details.
The book made me think about not being swift to judge other’s behaviors. Sometimes what motivates us is too deep and hurtful to explain, we just try to start anew. I would recommend this book, for not only did I read something about a fascinating culture, but also about genuine human behavior.