I Am Forbidden

By Anouk Markovits
(Hogarth, Hardcover, 9780307984739, 302pp.)

Publication Date: May 8, 2012

List Price: $25.00*
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Description

A family is torn apart by fierce belief and private longing in this unprecedented journey deep inside the most insular Hasidic sect, the Satmar.
 
 
     Sweeping from the Central European countryside just before World War II to Paris to contemporary Williamsburg, Brooklyn, I Am Forbidden brings to life four generations of one Satmar family.
     Opening in 1939 Transylvania, five-year-old Josef witnesses the murder of his family by the Romanian Iron Guard and is rescued by a Gentile maid to be raised as her own son. Five years later, Josef rescues a young girl, Mila, after her parents are killed while running to meet the Rebbe they hoped would save them. Josef helps Mila reach Zalman Stern, a leader in the Satmar community, in whose home Mila is raised as a sister to Zalman’s daughter, Atara. As the two girls mature, Mila’s faith intensifies, while her beloved sister Atara discovers a world of books and learning that she cannot ignore. With the rise of communism in central Europe, the family moves to Paris, to the Marais, where Zalman tries to raise his children apart from the city in which they live.
     When the two  girls come of age, Mila marries within the faith, while Atara continues to question fundamentalist doctrine. The different choices the two sisters makes force them apart until a dangerous secret threatens to banish them from the only community they’ve ever known.
     A beautifully crafted, emotionally gripping story of what happens when unwavering love, unyielding law, and centuries of tradition collide, I Am Forbidden announces the arrival of an extraordinarily gifted new voice and opens a startling window on a world long closed to most of us, until now.




About the Author
Anouk Markovits a ete elevee en France dans une famille Satmar jusqu'a ce qu'a l'age de 19 ans. Elle s'enfuie en Amerique pour echapper a un mariage arrange et entreprendre des etudes laiques. Apres des etudes a Columbia, elle a obtenu un Master d'architecture de la School of Design de Harvard et un PhD en etudes romanes a l'universite Cornell. Elle a travaille sur les decors du film "L'Insoutenable legerete de l'etre". Elle est mariee et habite New York.
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