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Extended Audio Sample The Dovekeepers: A Novel, by Alice Hoffman Click for printable size audiobook cover
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (22,331 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Alice Hoffman Narrator: Aya Cash, Heather Lind, Jessica Hecht, Tovah Feldshuh Publisher: Simon & Schuster Audio Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date:
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The Dovekeepers is Alice Hoffman’s most ambitious and mesmerizing novel, a tour de force of research and imagination set in ancient Israel.

Nearly two thousand years ago, nine hundred Jews held out for months against armies of Romans on Masada, a mountain in the Judean desert. According to the ancient historian Josephus, two women and five children survived. Based on this tragic and iconic event, Hoffman’s novel is a spellbinding tale of four extraordinarily bold, resourceful, and sensuous women, each of whom has come to Masada by a different path. Yael’s mother died in childbirth, and her father, an expert assassin, never forgave her for that death. Revka, a village baker’s wife, watched the murder of her daughter by Roman soldiers; she brings to Masada her young grandsons, rendered mute by what they have witnessed. Aziza is a warrior’s daughter, raised as a boy, a fearless rider and expert marksman who finds passion with a fellow soldier. Shirah, born in Alexandria, is wise in the ways of ancient magic and medicine, a woman with uncanny insight and power.

The lives of these four complex and fiercely independent women intersect in the desperate days of the siege. All are dovekeepers, and all are also keeping secrets—about who they are, where they come from, who fathered them, and whom they love.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “Beautiful, harrowing, a major contribution to twenty-first-century literature.”

    Toni Morrison

  • “I am still reeling from The Dovekeepers--from the history Alice Hoffman illuminates, from the language she uses to bring these women to life. This novel is a testament to the human spirit and to love rising from the ashes of war. But most of all, this novel is one that will never be forgotten by a reader.”

    Jodi Picoult

  • “In her remarkable new novel, Alice Hoffman holds a mirror to our ancient past as she explores the contemporary themes of sexual desire, women’s solidarity in the face of strife, and the magic that's quietly present in our day-to-day living. Put The Dovekeepers at the pinnacle of Hoffman’s extraordinary body of work. I was blown away.”

    Wally Lamb

  • “Hoffman’s fiction is always compelling, but the history within The Dovekeepers makes this novel haunting.”

    USA Today

  • “Nothing [Hoffman’s] written would prepare you for the gravitas of her new book, an immersive historical novel about Masada during the Roman siege in the first century. The Dovekeepers is an enormously ambitious, multipart story, richly decorated with the details of life 2,000 years ago…Hoffman doesn’t ignore the larger-than-life leaders and their deadly clash, but her creative path into Masada is from the ground up: not through its generals and warriors, but through its mothers, daughters, and wives. The result is a high-minded feminist story of unassailable seriousness.”

    Washington Post

  • “This powerful and gripping novel about survival and endurance will stay with you for a long time.”

    Library Journal

  • A New York Times Bestseller
  • A Washington Post Bestseller
  • An Amazon Best Book of the Month, October 2011
  • Selected for the October 2011 Indie Next List
  • An Amazon Top 100 Book of 2011

Listener Opinions

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 by Kim | 2/16/2014

    " I didn't realize the true impact of the book until the end. So glad I read it. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 by Lori | 2/6/2014

    " I was reluctant to pick up the book but once I did, I couldn't put it down. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 by Mar | 2/2/2014

    " The novel follows and intertwines the stories of three women who come from various backgrounds to Masada and are there from 70 AD until the fortress falls to the Romans four years later. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Leandra | 1/23/2014

    " I enjoyed this book. Kind of reminds us just how lucky we are. So much suffering out there in this world. Life was really tough all those years ago. "

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