It is recorded that two women and five children walked out of Masada in 74 C.E., survivors of a final act of defiance, when all hope had been lost. The Dovekeepers
, meticulously researched for five years, transports us to this ancient time and is filled with such rich detail, one can almost smell the cumin-dusted challah browning as it bakes. Without a doubt, this is Alice Hoffman's finest work to date, catapulting it far and above her previous endeavors.
While The Dovekeepers
provides us with a plethora of intricate descriptions, weaving them deftly throughout and pulling all of our senses into play, it is the superbly crafted cast of characters who provide the heart and soul of this tale. Four women speak with such strong voices that Masada, the fortress built by Herod on the western edge of the Judean desert, sizzles with life.
Beyond the Book
Alice Hoffman's The Dovekeepers
shows us a world where doves, in addition to serving day-to-day purposes, represent so much more. Along with their close cousin, the pigeon, doves make up the bird family Columbidae. And while they're often thought of as bright white birds, with over 300 species, they actually come in all shapes and sizes.
Throughout the ages, steeped in rich tradition and lore, doves have served to symbolize many aspects connected with the "Divine." In the ancient world, the dove was a symbol for the Mother goddess, the "feminine divine".
Doves served as icons of fertility and procreation...