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Temple Shaaray Tefila Book Club Book Talk w/Author Howard Schwach
Monday, December 20, 2021 @7:15pm-8:30pm
December Book: The Masada Complex by Howard Schwach
In 2018, at 79, retired teacher and community newspaper editor Howard J. Schwach took a two-week trip to Israel with his daughter, Amy Schwach, our Executive Director, for Temple Shaaray Tefila’s congregational trip to Israel. Howard’s life-long interest in archeology and his secular Jewish upbringing added to his excitement of visiting historic sites and resulted in his writing a novel, The Masada Complex, based on the trip.
Join Rabbi Reines and Howard Schwach for an in depth look at Howard’s novel, The Masada Complex and the surprising history that inspired this book. Rabbi Reines will lead a Book Club discussion at 7:15pm, and the author will join us at 8:00pm for further discussion.
From Outskirts Press:
Retired NYPD detective Dave Rifkin was on his way to Israel and he wasn’t sure why he was going. Most likely it was because his present girlfriend (although he wasn’t sure he wanted to call her that), whose name was Linda, was going on the trip along with a group of senior citizens from her West Side synagogue and he felt pressured to go along. He was on line to go through security and passport control and it was too late to back out, a move that would have cost him money and probably Linda as well. Waiting to board, Rifkin notices a man off in the corner, looking intently at his tour group and making notes in a little reporter’s notebook that he was carrying. The hair on the back of his neck started to tingle, his detective’s instinct kicking in for the first time since his retirement. Like most cops, Dave doesn’t believe in coincidences, so when he sees the same man several times in his first few days in Israel, he talks to Yoni Leitner, an IDF intelligence specialist who happens to be the grandson of two of his fellow travelers. So begins an adventure that leads Dave and Linda, along with other members of the tour group, from Tel Aviv to Masada and Jerusalem, where they are kidnapped by a surprising group of terrorists who plan to kill them all even as the sun comes up on the Masada Plateau. It takes all of Dave’s experience and cunning to keep them all alive and bring the terrorists to heel. After chasing the terrorist leader through the streets of the Old City, his adventure ends and his nightmares begin in front of the Western Wall in Jerusalem with a surprise ending that will make you want to read more.