Freedland has spent over twenty years covering the struggles in the Middle East, and this novel deals with Judaism as well as any I have read.
The story begins with the death of seventy-seven year old Gerald Merton. He is an elderly British citizen who is shot by a United Nations' security guard on alert after a tip about an alleged terrorist attack. Fearing that they were in for a major international incident after killing a seemingly innocent tourist, Henning Munchau, primary legal counsel for the U.N.,asks attorney Tom Byrne to help. Byrne has had a bit of career trouble, but he owes Munchau a favor and takes on the task of meeting with Merton's daughter Rebecca, in England.
While talking with Rebecca, Tom picks up a notebook he mistakes as his own. Before returning it, he reads it and finds it belonged to Gerald Merton. It contains details of his parent's murder suicide and the capture of him and his sisters by the nazis. The more that Byrne searches (with Rebecca's help) into the past, the more confused they become. Merton was the sole survivor of a nazi massacre, escaped and joined a resistance group determined to extract vengeance.
There are many complications in the United States, but I don't want to give any more of the story away. I recommend this to anyone with an interest in a well written historical novel that will keep you up at night trying to understand how human beings can rationalize committing acts of horror and still go home at night with smiles on their faces.
Publisher - Harper
Date of Publication - December 2008