The Source Kindle Ò Paperback

The Source In the grand storytelling style that is his signature James Michener sweeps us back through time to the very beginnings of the Jewish faith thousands of years ago Through the predecessors of four modern men and women we experience the entire colorful history of the Jews including the life of the early Hebrews and their persecutions the impact of Christianity the Crusades and the Spanish Inuisition all the way to the founding of present day Israel and the Middle East conflictA sweeping chronology filled with excitementTHE PHILADELPHIA INUIRER

10 thoughts on “The Source

  1. Lee Drake Lee Drake says:

    I can remember reading this thing for hours each night curled up in bed when I was 13 years old It basically began my career in archaeology fingers crossed for grad school apps Based on Tel Megiddo it tells the story of a fictional Tel from its birth to its excavation 12000 years later It follows the path of a single family against many gods as it tells the story of Canaanite Hebrew Greek Roman Ottoman and Israeli civilization While some of the material is dated it nevertheless remains one of the most creative and well written books I've ever had the pleasure of reading and re reading

  2. Michael Michael says:

    I have mixed fond and not so fond memories about The Source I am a huge Michener fan and have read all of his books The Source is at the top of my Michener list along with The Drifters I started The Source in 1974 when I was visiting Israel the subject of the book Part of my visit included a bus tour of Israel I was delighted to read about a place then reach the actual site of which Michener was writing The problem was that about the time I arrived in Israel I developed a serious case of Nebuchadnezzar's Complaint the middle eastern version of Montezuma's Revenge There was a serious lack of toilet paper on the tour and I had to read as fast as I could to keep the supply of usable paperpack ahead of the need to make use of it in a manner not consistent with that intended by the publisher The novel was over a thousand pages and I had to read really really really fast finishing the book in about three days I have repurchased the The Source the original is no longer extant and intent to reread it at a enjoyable pace

  3. Gary Gary says:

    The Source is definitely a highly entertaining and extremely interesting work and I never lost interest It presents the panorama of history of the Holy Land particularly the Galilee through the agesI had to read it a second time to realize what a work of genius it isThere is so much in this incredibly long book that does depict the experiences and spirit of the Land of Israel and the Jewish people who originated in this remarkable landIn 'The Voice of Gomer' a Hebrew mother is commanded by G D to take steps that are difficult for her and her family but are necessary to save the Israelite NationHe introduces throughout the story various beautiful and strong spirited Hebrew women who have kept the flame burning such as the enchanting Kerith wife of Jabaal the builder in 'Psalm of the Hoopoe Bird' the beautiful compassionate and spirited Jael daughter of Rabbi Asher in `The Law' the lovely and gentle Elisheba in 'The Saintly Men of Safed' and the tough and idealistic Sabra Illana Hacohen in 'Rebbe Itzic and the Sabra'He does illustrate the depth of the attachment of the Jewish people to their homeland which was never broken as well as the cycle of persecution and the attempts by so many different groups throughout history to annihilate the JewsAll of this is being repeated in the latest struggle today of the Jewish people to hold onto their rightful homeland and survive against an evil people supported by a world in which it is fashionable to hate IsraelA world which is once creating a great injustice against the Jewish peopleThe young Hellenist Jew Menelaus in 'The Gymnasium' who is so determined to cut of all connections with his Judaism reminds me of the leftwing Jewish intellectuals who find it fashionable to side with the enemies of Israel by embracing pro Palestinian left fascismIn 'King of the Jews' we learn about King Herod and observe the portrait of a tyrant and about the cruel persecution of his people and in 'Yigal and his Three Generals' we see just how fierce is the will of the Jewish people to rule their own landAlways there are the wonderful sites and sounds of the Land of Israel and it's wonderful people especially it's beautiful children `What has happened to our beloved Sephardim?' A man in still another corner shouted while in the center a group of women from Morocco sang and beat on drums precisely like the ones which had been used at Makor four thousand years before The music was wild and imperative and four little girls danced beautifully throwing their arms in the air and captivating the men including Cullinane as Jewish girls had done for generations out of mind and His three sons where married and his principal joy was in playing with his eleven grandchildren sitting on the steps of the Venus temple as they ran back and forth across the forumG D bless the children of IsraelMichener speaks about the birth of Judaism and Christianity in the Land of Israel and their place in the world giving insight with gems such as In these centuries when G D through the agency of preceptorswas forging a Christian church so that it might fulfil the longing of a hungry world He was at the same time perfecting his first religion Judaism so that it might stand as a permanent norm against which to judge all others Whenever in the future some new religion strayed too far from the basic precepts of Judaism G D could be assured that it was in error; so in the Galilee His ancient cauldron of faith He spent as much time upon the old Jews as He did upon the new ChristiansThe discussion between Count Volkmar and a Jewish Rabbi in 'The Fires of Ma Couer ' illustrate how wherever Jews are they always remember that their only true homeland is Israel and 'The Saintly Men of Safed' explores the flowering of the spiritual life of Judaism in the town of Safed in northern Israel in the 16th Century as well as how Safed was a town where Jews came from around Europe to escape persecutionTherefore we read in this chapter about the humiliation suffered by Jews in Spain Germany and Italy during this timeIn 'Twilight of an Empire' we see even in the 19th century how the Arabs conspired with a powerful Empire to deprive the Jews of land in their own homeland and how a young Jewish traveller from Russia comes across Jews whose ancestors always stayed in Israel throughout the DiasporaThere was always a significant continuous Jewish presence in that country which was never broken This book shows the Jewish presence throughout the centuries in the Land of Israel through the years through the chapters including the period between the Roman destruction of the First Temple in 70 CE and the rebirth of a sovereign Jewish State in Israel in 1948`The Law' recounts the vigorous Talmudic academies in Tiberius in the fourth century CEAnd then there is 'Rabbi Itzic and the Sabra' which draws on the sacrifices and ideals of the young Jews who fought and died to re establish the State of IsraelHowever there is absolutely no evidence whatsoever that the Arabs living in Israel those who are today referred to wrongly as 'Palestinians' are descendants of the Canaanites And in fact all historical facts point to these people as being Arabs originating from ArabiaSo I don't know what he means by referring to the Arab archaeologist Jemail Tabari as a 'scion of Ur' and a 'descendant of Jabaal the Hoopoe'He never refers to these Arabs as 'Palestinian' simply because when this book was written in 1965 the label ' Palestinian' had not been invented to refer to these peopleNobody used this term in 1965 It only became fashionable later

  4. Amy Amy says:

    This was a book that helped me have a complete view of world history and all the tensions surrounding the middle east I read in in high school during the first gulf war My high school was pretty substandard it was a small town and the students didn't care or try very hard The school was struggling just to teach the basics I wanted than that and I read a lot of stuff My mom had a subscription to Newsweek and I read it nearly cover to cover every week since I was 12 Despite all my history classes the Newsweek articles about Middle East confrontations and extra reading that I had done I didn't know that that Israel had only been created as a nation in 1948 until I read James Michener's The SourceThe Source was a favorite book of my parents and they recommended it me It was a mind expanding experience for me from my little town or even the self centered attitude of California in general to imagine a place in the world that had history going back so many thousands of years It was epicI almost think this book should be reuired reading in our world history classesAs a side note when I read this book the first time I followed it up with Exodus by Leon Uris

  5. Melissa Melissa says:

    If you've ever held something really old in your hands and wondered what was life like when this was made? The Source is a chance to have your musings answered Michener weaves fiction and history together seamlessly as he intertwines a narrative of an archeological dig in the 1960s think Indiana Jones without the bullwhip with the stories of the artifacts and the people who created them He traces the history of a single town in IsraelPalestine through the ages from man's earliest attempts to tame nature and understand the supernatural through the evolutions of the world's greatest religions to the contemporary struggles that mark the land The layers of story and the intricacies of the plot make it an enjoyable read even than once If the premise itself isn't enough to get you to read this book then consider this The Source is nearly 1000 pages long and I have read it nearly 6 times

  6. Jamie Sigal Jamie Sigal says:

    The Source is a thing of beauty in its planning and intricacies This books is three things at once A novel a collection of short stories and a history of religion from ancient times through to the modern era and it works wonderfully on all three levels though it is best as a novel since every story actually ties together in the end much like one would expect human history to do Everything is connected and that includes us all as people Most of all though if you have any interest in Judaism the oldest of the Big Three this book is a journey you must take Same truth stands if you're interested in the conflict in the modern Middle East including the mentality of Arab vs Jew We didn't always hate each other you know In fact in the end we're all the same The book celebrates our differences while pointing a lot of this sameness out a sameness many of us would like to ignore because it's easier to hate those that are different From the time of Baal through Hellenistic and Roman rule from the crusades to the refugees from the Russian pogroms and Nazi Germany this book is a good introduction to history as well as a love story to a land that has served humans since before we had a concept of time itself A masterpiece

  7. Brett C Brett C says:

    After reading 'Alaska' immediately before this one I did not find this as good This book tells the tale of the Middle East and the spark of early Judaism and its transmutation into Christianity and Islam The story is broken into two parts one being an archaeological excavation site and the other a historical fiction style of Middle Eastern religious based history James Michener follows the similar style of writing starting with prehistoric information the early Hebrews and Canaanites transition into Roman rule of the Middle East and the birth of Christianity the rise of Islam and the modern eraThere are again lots of historical people and events to include King David and Nebuchadnezzar Caligula the Ottomans the Spanish Inuisition and the eventual creation of the State of Israel in 1948I get the idea of the story but I liked 'Alaska' better This book had a back and forth feel with transitions from history and back to the excavation site There is a lot of information and historical relevance in this book but overall I liked 'Alaska' better Thanks

  8. Abby Abby says:

    This is typical Michener and he went on the archaeological excavations at Hazor to research it I really loved it when I read it in junior high which I did partly to prove that I could read such long books I reread it several times afterwards Now as an archaeologist who specialized in ancient Israel I can say that it's a fun book to read but the interpretations are sensationalist overtly Zionist and now out of date On the other hand it probably stirs up interest in my field and it is fun to read

  9. Natalie Natalie says:

    The current news of a 1500 year old church uncovered in an archaeological dig in Israel was like déjà vu for me after reading The Source early this New Year's This picture above and its story could be straight out of a movie version of The Source I think the book's dig was based on Tel Megiddo but Michener observed archaeologists at work at Hazor to prepare for writing this book As you can tell from reading the other reviews here the conflicts between peoples and the layering of religious histories in the middle east are traced here in to their earliest roots in James A Michener's signature historical fiction style In Melissa's Review she writes that Michener traces the history of a single town in IsraelPalestine through the ages from man's earliest attempts to tame nature and understand the supernatural through the evolutions of the world's greatest religions to the contemporary struggles that mark the land I was surprised and encouraged to see so many reviewers remarking upon how many times they'd re read this book and how many archaeologists here on GR are reviewing and rating this book many even awarding the book some claim on creating the ambition and interest that led them to pursue the field of archeology in the first place It is a compelling read that illustrates the multidisciplinary nature of archeology and its reliance on a knowledge of history language science engineering and architecture Wonderful stuff and even wonderful to have all of it bound between the covers of one book My paperback copy felt like it might be as old as the church uncovered by this dig and Michener's fictional euivalent it literally fell into about four sections somewhere in Phoenix during my New Year's journey's stopover on the way home so I haven't finished it yet Half of it went into the circular file at PHX This is truly a story of biblical proportions so losing half of it can still mean you were already a few hundred pages into the story I'll be getting a hardbound or kindle edition to use for reading the second half

  10. Lisa Reising Lisa Reising says:

    I began reading with enthusiasm for the premise of this book looking at the history of Israel through the eyes of archaeologists at a dig Unfortunately now I feel it was a subject too large in scope for even this author and his legendary research After throwing out the first chapter on cavemen as an anomaly each subseuent chapter could not stem the sliding credibility factor I'm pretty certain Michener didn't understand Biblical history for example his characterization of King David was laughable even taking into account his mistakes and flaws so therefore how much could I rely on his artistic license from other sources as well? After investing time in than half the book I realized no amount of time would heal these flaws I give it 2 stars instead of 1 112 would be better because I DID gain an appreciation for the evilness of Ba'al and other cult worshipping groups which helped me see why Yahweh would authorize wiping them off the earth But the protagonists in his vignettes of each historical period even the Jewish ones often had a high level of enmity toward God in any form I don't believe Israel's history is so very bleak and dismal Challenging yes but so void of joy across every era? He made even miraculous events dark and suspicious in character

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