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Beaufort, a remote and beautiful fort in southern Lebanon dating back to the Crusades, has been an outpost of the Israeli Defence Force for nearly twenty years, and now, for the teenage soldiers who live there presiding over the last moments of Israel's presence in Lebanon, it has become a world of its own, an enclave in the heart of enemy territory where boy soldiers create a state with its own rules and its own unique, outrageous, brutal language. With a critical eye and an empathetic heart, Ron Leshem dishes up a wholly human story that takes place in conditions that are anything but. Fast-paced and brutally honest, unflinching and uproariously funny, Beaufort has been hailed - not only by critics but by the generation of soldiers who served in Lebanon during Israeli occupation - as the true voice of that sobering period.Written as the diary of Liraz (Erez) Liberti, the head of a commando team stationed at Beaufort during the last winter of Israeli occupation, "Beaufort" is a revolutionary and potent look at the futility of war and death, and the courage it takes to put an end to it. This is not a story of war, but of retreat. This is a story with no enemy, only an amorphous entity that fires missiles from the surrounding mountains. And while thirteen young men propel the novel and give it life and colour, the real hero of "Beaufort" is fear: contagious, intoxicating, palpable fear, a word they forbid themselves from uttering. "Beaufort" is a devastating portrayal of a generation finding that the values and principles bestowed on them by their parents have betrayed them, and the terrifying nihilistic reality of Middle Eastern conflict.

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Book Details

ISBN: 9781846551307
ISBN-10: 1846551307
Format: Hardback
(241mm x 162mm x 29mm)
Pages: 320
Imprint: Harvill Secker
Publisher: Vintage Publishing
Publish Date: 28-Feb-2008
Country of Publication: United Kingdom

Reviews

US Kirkus Review » Leshem's debut, which won the 2006 Sapir Prize in Israel and was made into a film, is an alternately grim and blackly comic war/coming-of-age novel set at an Israeli outpost in southern Lebanon in 2000. Liraz Liberti, age 21, is head of a 13-man commando team stationed at deceptively gorgeous Beaufort, a Crusader fort under constant threat from Hezbollah in the last days of the Israeli occupation. The novel takes the lively form of the protagonist's diary, and it does many things well, capturing the endless-seeming stretches of boredom experienced by servicemen and showing how they are punctuated, terrifyingly and unpredictably, by deadly action, and conveying the absurdities and miscommunications and contradictions of the orders that come from above. Leshem is especially good in his portrayal of young men simultaneously brave and terrified, cynical and innocent, swaggering and vulnerable - and he gets at these things, persuasively, by means of the intricate, desperately playful argot of a fighting force trapped together in close quarters under high pressure. Liberti and his men become literally the last to leave Beaufort, pausing outside the walls to detonate the enclave that's been their home, and the home of Israeli soldiers before them, for nearly two decades.The hyper-colloquial style may not be lost in translation, but its effects are a bit blunted, and this is not a particularly subtle or inventive book. Nevertheless, Leshem tells a gripping, viscerally powerful tale. (Kirkus Reviews)


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Author Biography - Ron Leshem

Ron Leshem, born in 1976, is a native of Ramat Gan, near Tel Aviv. His novel Beaufort won the Sapir Prize - Israel's top literary award - for 2006, as well as the Yitzhak Sadeh Prize for military literature. In 2002 he became deputy editor of Maariv newspaper and in 2006 joined the Channel Two television station as deputy director in charge of programming and special projects. Beaufort is his first novel.

Books By Author Ron Leshem

Beaufort by Ron Leshem

Beaufort

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