The Books of Rachel by Joel Gross (1979, Hardcover)

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The Books of Rachel
by Joel Gross
Publisher: Seaview Books
Copyright 1979
Book Club Edition

This dramatic, richly detailed saga of an indomitable Jewish family spans five centuries.  The origins of the modern diamond industry, the Inquisition in Spain, the incomparably beautiful Venice of the seventeenth century, and a pilgrimage across nineteenth-century Palestine are part of the backdrop for a sweeping novel of family, of passion, of faith.

For five hundred years one family has controlled the sale of diamonds to the world.  Originating in fifteenth-century Spain, the family has spread to every corner of the civilized world, unified by blood, and by a name -- Rachel.

In every generation of the family there is one, and only one, Rachel.  The first baby girl born after the death of the last Rachel is given her name, and her legacy -- a flawless 60-carat white diamond that travels over the centuries from India to Egypt, to Spain, to Venice, to Berlin, to Jerusalem, to London, and, finally, to contemporary New York.

But the fabulous diamond is only part of the legacy.  Most important are the courage and spirit handed down from one bearer of the name to the other.  Each Rachel is truly heroic, inspired by and excelling the namesakes who preceded her.  One dies in the fury of the Inquisition, another in the inferno of the Holocaust.  Yet the family lives on, its life spirit unquenchable.

Because Rachel's family is Jewish, the novel is also a partial history of the Jews' wandering through Europe over half a millennium.  We see what happens when a family is strong enough in will and wealth to stand up and fight back, to wreak terrible vengeance, to triumph.

Everyone who reads this remarkable novel will be spellbound by its power and touched by its theme:  We all come from many places, many people.  We are, all of us, of old blood, ancient roots, and we are all linked.

Condition:  Used.  Hardcover.  Dust cover.  Pages may be tanning and discolored from age.  Previous owner's "Library Of" stamp is on the front endpaper.  Dust cover and dust cover flaps are tanning and discolored from age and show a bit of edge wear.

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    • ISBN 0872235408
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