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“BLESSED IS THE ONE WHO FINDS WISDOM.
AND THE ONE WHO GAINS UNDERSTANDING”
                                               PROVERBS 3:13

 

Gila's Recommended Holy Land Books

 
Looking for historical background?
 
  • Essential Writings of Josephus translated by Paul Maier. The colorful stories of the first century AD Jewish historian put in chronological order with repetitions deleted. A great companion to the Bible.
  • Daily Life at the time of Jesus by Miriam Feinberg Vamosh. Vividly illustrates village life, as well as the urban metropolis Jerusalem, with its gates, marketplace, palace and temple. The chapter “What would a shekel buy” is a fascinating look at first century AD wages and prices.
 

  Order Daily Life for $22 which includes shipping

 
 
  • I Claudius by Robert Graves is a fictional account of the Roman period, but he often quotes ancient historians Josephus and Suetonius, adding a bit of flair.  I love retelling his tale of the owl and Herod Agrippa in the theater of Caesarea. Acts 12:21 offers a complementary version of Agrippa’s dramatic fall.
Want to prepare for pilgrimage?
 
  • The Innocents Abroad by Mark Twain. First published 1869.  An American pilgrim shares his impressions of the Holy Land -- and his fellow travelers.  Mark Twain’s most popular book during his lifetime.

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Like to read cookbooks?
 
  • Food at the time of the Bible by Miriam Feinberg Vamosh, sub-titled “From Adam’s Apple to the Last Supper.”  Covering bread, wine, oil, sweets and spices, the book illuminates and illustrates biblical passages.  Don’t miss the chapter on the most famous meal in history: The Last Supper.  For gourmet cooks, try such exotic biblical dishes as, “Jesse’s Vine Leaves Stuffed with Cheese,” “Jacob’s Lentil Soup,” or “The Prodigal Son’s Veal Stew.”
Into women's studies?
 
  • Women at the time of the Bible, the latest Holy Land resource by Miriam Feinberg Vamosh, surveys all aspects of women's lives in biblical days from matchmaking to widowhood, home and hearth, to makeup, perfume and sorcery.  This 103-page colorfully illustrated book is richly documented with biblical quotes.  A must-companion for all Bible study!  Order Women at the time of the Bible...
Interested in knowing more about the Dead Sea?
 
  • The Dead Sea: Myth, History & Politics by Barbara Kreiger.  A literary travelogue about the exploration of the lowest place on earth.  Compare your impressions of floating in the Dead Sea with those of Mark Twain and many others.

Gila's favorite Holy Land books

Photo:  Gila Yudkin

Recommended titles from my well-thumbed library

 
Or the Dead Sea Scrolls?
 
  • The Hidden Scrolls by Neil Silberman. Sub-titled, "Christianity, Judaism and the War for the Dead Sea Scrolls," the book dramatically describes the discovery of the famous scrolls and the controversy surrounding their publication.  Reads like a thriller.
Looking for archeological fiction?
 
  • The Source by James Michener is long, but the first half, at least, is well worth reading.  At the time of writing, James Michener was accompanying Yigal Yadin’s dig at Hatzor and much of it is fictionalized in the novel.  A friend of the author’s, Sarah Perl, once described to my group how James Michener, a guest at her Safed hotel, would read stacks of books under two extremely old olive trees on her property.  Those olive trees also found their way into the novel.

Tour the Temple Mount with Gila's MP3 audio tour in the company of Abraham and Isaac, David and Solomon, Jesus and the disciples, the angel Gabriel and Mohammed.  Meet many other luminaries, both real and legendary.

LISTEN free to the first two minutes of Gila's Temple Mount audio tour:  Click here and then click "download" at top right

Gila's Temple Mount tour is now also available as a written 24-page PDF with a Temple Mount plan, guidelines for passing the security check and ten recommended reads on the Temple Mount from Gila's bookshelves.

Perplexed by the modern conflict?
 
  • From Beirut to Jerusalem by Thomas Friedman.  Though published in 1989, it remains the best book on Israel in the Middle East today.  Written by an exceptionally astute New York Times Correspondent.
  • The Siege by Conor Cruise O’Brien.  An Irishman’s sympathetic look at the last 100 years of Israeli history. In the prologue, O’Brien describes what it was like, as Ireland’s representative to the UN, to sit between the delegates from Israel and Iraq. It’s hilarious.
Interested in biographies, books on archeology, biblical commentaries, nature in our biblical heritage, or historical fiction?  Contact me for further recommendations of titles from my well-thumbed library.

 

GILA YUDKIN TCHERNIKOVSKI 64A JERUSALEM ISRAEL
gila@itsgila.com

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Holy Land Photography by Gila Yudkin