All the Rivers by Dorit Rabinyan


Kindle Edition, 288 pages

Published March 2nd 2017 by Serpent’s Tail (first published May 2014)

Original Title גדר חיה

A chance encounter in New York brings two strangers together: Liat is an idealistic translation student, Hilmi a talented young painter. Together they explore the city, share fantasies, jokes and homemade meals, and fall in love. There is only one problem: Liat is from Israel, Hilmi from Palestine.
Keeping their deepening relationship secret, the two lovers build an intimate universe for two in this city far from home. But outside reality can only be kept at bay for so long. After a tempestuous visit from Hilmi’s brother, cracks begin to form in the relationship, and their points of difference – Liat’s military service, Hilmi’s hopes for Palestine’s future – threaten to overwhelm their shared present. When they return separately to their divided countries, Liat and Hilmi must decide whether to keep going, or let go.
A prizewinning bestseller, but banned in Israeli schools for its frank and tender depiction of a taboo relationship, this is the deeply affecting story of two people trying to bridge one of the most deeply riven borders in the world.


Thank you Netgalley , Serpents Tail and Dorit Rabinyan for sending me an ARC for my honest and unbiased review.

Set in New York it tells the tale of Liat and Himli. There is however a problen, she is an Isreali and he a Palestinian.
Liat is a translation student and Himlil a painter and also an Arabic teacher. Liat is supposed to meet her friend Andrew for coffee, but as he cannot make it or conatct Liat he sends his Arabic tutor Hilmi instead.There is an attraction between Liat and Hilmi and they begin a secret relationship. Parents and friends would not approve because of the differnces and prujudice between the two cultures. Politics is a subject that causes several arguments between the two of them as well as between a couple of family members that are aware of this liaison.
This is a good book, but at times the romantic aspect felt a little flat, this could be down to the translation. I really enjoyed seeing the relationship between Liat and Hilmi. The way that two different cultures see each other to the point where their relationship is kept a secret, and how political and relogious differences are discussed was very good.