Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Review: Hope Street Jerusalem by Irris Makler

Here's the description from HarperCollin's website:
Moving to a strange city always takes courage, but never more so than in a place where the daily expression of love and hate can turn a simple choice of a romantic table by the window into a life or death decision.

Both a love story and bittersweet tribute to her beloved adopted city of Jerusalem, Irris Makler shines a hopeful light on a part of the world where the news reports often makes it seem impossibly dark. From juggling the danger and unpredictability of her work as a roving foreign correspondent , covering everything from Palestinian suicide attacks to Israeli incursions into the West Bank, to falling in love with a handsome and charming young Israeli, and gaining a mischievious four-legged companion along the way, she allows us an intimate glimpse into a passionate, vibrant and fascinating world.

Adventurous, compassionate and engagingly honest, the award-winning author of OUR WOMAN IN KABUL is a master at capturing the personal stories behind the news we really want to know - and her story is the most interesting of all.

I've been on a roll with memoirs so far in 2014, and this is the book that started it all.  I can't even begin to explain just how fantastic it is!  It was just the book I was looking for, so thank you TLC Book Tours for giving me the chance to read it.

I was hooked from the first page.  I just kept thinking, "this is an ordinary person like myself who travels and lives all around the world, sometimes puts herself in harms way, and is living her dream.."  This book makes you think about the journalists and war correspondants you see all the time on the news.  Because, news flash, they are people too, with real lives.

Makler's relationship with her dog Mia was so touching and sweet.  Mia is actually just like my mom's chocolate lab Sophie-a complete terror most of the time but totally sweet once in a while so you forgive her for all the bad stuff she does (like cut my face up with her paw right before Christmas..but that's getting off topic).  I loved the parts of the book with Mia.  And really, Makler hits home for me by including Mia so much in the book.  It's Mia who helps her figure out who she is and what she wants, and it's Mia who ends up helping her find friends in Jerusalem.

Speaking of Jerusalem, I never thought of traveling there, ever.  I've always figured it's just dangerous, not safe, and maybe not that interesting?  But now I'm pining to go.  Maybe someday I'll feel safe going as an American to that part of the world.  I hope it comes, because especially the old city sounds so beautiful and old and just different!  This book renewed my love of travel.  I can't wait to take another trip now.

So, you may not enjoy this book like I did, because I could not get enough of it and I feel like you can't love it anymore than I did!  But I guarantee it will make you think and take you to places you've probably never been.  And you'll fall in love with Mia, bad personality and all :)

Title: Hope Street Jerusalem
Author: Irris Makler
Date of Publication: Feb 25th, 2014
Number of Pages: 311
Genre: Nonfiction, memoir
Source: TLC Book Tours


  1. Had to log in to say thanks for such a rave review... am really touched that you liked 'Hope Street, Jerusalem' and got the story I was trying to tell. And Mia has mellowed into a great dog now - no more bad personality left, proving it's worth hanging in there :-) Irris Makler

  2. I hope the rest of the books you read this year turn out to be as great as this one!

    Thanks for being on the tour. I'm featuring your review on TLC's Facebook page today.

  3. I will hop in and have a look at that. I am enjoying Kelly's recommendations very much!