P.D. James and Leon Uris

Posted by Sherry on 8/3/2004 in General |

I do like some twentieth century authors–just not the ones they assign in school. Leon Uris was born on this date in 1924. I read Exodus a long time ago as a teenager, and I’ve revisited it more than once. I probably get my attitude about Israel and the Palestinian problem more from this book than from Biblical prophecy. Uris paints a detailed, pro-Israeli panaorama of the beginnings of modern Israel. Then, there are the other two “Jewish books” by Uris that I’ve read–Mila 18, about the Warsaw ghetto during World War II, and QB VII, another memorable novel about the Holocaust. Researching Uris on the internet, I see that he’s written several books that I haven’t read. I’ll have to add some of them to the legendary “books to read list.” Also, I’ve never seen the movie Exodus which stars Paul Newman as Ari Ben Canaan and Eva Marie Saint as Kitty Fremont. Maybe I shoud skip it since kirjasto says that “Uris publicly declared that the director (Otto Preminger) had ruined his book.” Leon Uris died in June, 2003.
P.D. James also celebrates a birthday today. She was born in 1920 and created a British peer in 1991. Her title is “Baroness James of Holland Park.” James is a writer of detective novels, and her detective/protagonist Adam Dalgliesh is an intriguing character. He’s a Scotland Yard detective and also a poet. The moral component of James’ novels is central to their interest and literary quality. All James’ characters must deal with sin and its effects, and in reading about them I am forced to confront the results of sin and evil in my own life. Sounds rather unpleasant, but instead it’s thought-provoking and satisfying. If you’d like to read more about P.D. James as a Christian novelist, Ralph Wood, professor at Baylor University has this article called “The Case for P.D. James as a Christian Novelist.”


  • […] course, Tolstoy and Dostoyevski, although they’re more historical) Israel: Exodus by Leon Uris Hawaii: Hawaii by James Michener For some of these places, all my ideas about the cultur […]

  • Semicolon says:

    […] I read this book last week and thought it gave a beautiful, but very sad, picture of life in India for many people. It’s the story of a poor family, a fourth daughter who, because she has no dowry, cannot marry well but must settle for marriage to a landless tenant farmer who brings her home to a mud hut he built himself. Fortunately for the girl, Rukmani, her husband Nathan is “poor in everything but in love and care for me, his wife, whom he took at the age of twelve.” Rukmani narrates the story in first person, telling of the birth of her daughter, the long wait during which the couple think they will have no more children, and then the birth of her five sons. The village where the family lives is on the edge of poverty and starvation; a bad year with too much rain or too little rain will push Rukmani’s family over the edge. Change and new economic oportunities come to the village; however, these new ideas and possibilities are full of danger too, for peasants who have nothing in reserve and are unable or unwilling to move with the times. I wrote about a month ago about some of my favorite fantasy worlds. These fantasy worlds were first encountered on the pages of books. Then, there are historical and sociological worlds that I visit mostly in books, too. Finally, there is the actual world. I’ve never been to India or China or South America, but I have a picture of what life in those lands is (or was) like–again, from books. I think that Nectar in a Sieve, first published in 1954, will become a large part of my picture of India, along with missionary stories, the young man I met a few years ago at Baptist World Alliance Youth Conference, and other sources, such as the women I see at the grocery store here in Clear Lake dressed in saris. Warning: The book has a bittersweet ending, but it’s realistic without being hopeless and depressing. Excellent. These are some of my favorite books that have given me a picture of the world. Most of them are fiction. Around the world in books: South Africa: Cry, the Beloved Country and Too Late the Phalarope both by Alan Paton India: Homeless Bird by Gloria Whelan China: Imperial Woman by Pearl S.Buck, The Importance of Living by Lin Yutang Antarctica: Troubling a Star by Madeleine L’Engle The Netherlands: The Hiding Place by Corrie Ten Boom England (Yorkshire): All Creatures Great and Small by James Herriot Lebanon: Alice by ? Doerr Russia: The Endless Steppe by Esther Hautzig (And, of course, Tolstoy and Dostoyevski, although they’re more historical) Israel: Exodus by Leon Uris Hawaii: Hawaii by James Michener […]

  • Semicolon says:

    […] Evil Under the Sun by Agatha Christie. Exodus by Leon Uris. Semicolon thoughts on the novels of Leon Uris. […]

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