The People of Forever Are Not Afraid - Shani Boianjiu

The defiant bumper sticker declaring that The People of Forever are not Afraid (Hogarth, $14) may describe some Israelis  today, but the protagonists of Shani Boianjiu’s stunning first novel are often afraid—as well as angry, depressed, and bored. The narrative follows three young women from the end of high school through their compulsory military service and the years just after. With little mention of religion or nationalistic ideology, Boianjiu depicts a country constantly struggling to maintain control of a potentially explosive situation, thus giving rise to a society that saps individuals of will and agency, even as their stifled passions intermittently erupt. Always feeling that her “hands are tied,” one woman states that her “favorite thing in life is when I get to make a choice.” While options seem rare, imagination and dreams are plentiful, whether as a coping mechanism to alleviate stultifying shifts at checkpoints or as further symptoms of living in a permanent war zone. Boianjiu’s characters invent lives for themselves as well as for the Palestinians they interrogate, people as worn down by the situation as they are.
The People of Forever Are Not Afraid: A Novel By Shani Boianjiu Cover Image
$19.00
ISBN: 9780307955975
Availability: Not On Our Shelves—Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Hogarth - June 25th, 2013