Adnan Mahmutović
Cinnamon Press, 2020

Book cover

The story follows Joseph Schneider who grows up in a Cherokee-Jewish family in the Smoky Mountains of North Carolina. He dreams to be a cook on the biggest ship there is in the world but his attachment to his mother Rachel and his rootedness to the little mountain village keep him from moving on. When his mother falls ill she reveals she stole him from a Palestinian girl Aliya in the 80s when she volunteered at a hospital in Gaza. Joseph refuses to know anything about his biological mother, but years later Joseph honors his promise to Rachel and embarks on a painful pilgrimage to the holy land, a walk in the footsteps of his American mother and a search for Aliya. 

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