This is a book about Palestine today. It is neither apologetic nor romanticized, but a powerful and brilliantly realized scream of a book, scorching and tender, from a journalist whose anger and empathy burn through every word.
Over the past three years, Ben Ehrenreich has shared the laughter, fury and sorrow of people in cities and villages across the West Bank, young and old people, men and women. He has witnessed the extremes to which they are pushed, the daily deprivation and oppression that they face, the strategies they construct to survive it – stoicism, resignation, rebellion, humour, and a stubborn, defiant joy. In The Way to the Spring, he describes the cruel mechanics of the Israeli occupation and the endless absurdities and tragedies it engenders: the complex and humiliating machinery of the checkpoints, walls, courts and prisons; the steady, strangling loss of lands that have been passed down for generations; the constant ebb and flow of deadly violence.
Blending political and historical context with the personal stories of the people Ehrenreich meets, The Way to the Spring is a testimony, a provocation and a vital document. Written with grace and power, it breathes fresh life and urgency to a place and a conflict that too easily disappears in the shouting. This is a necessary book, an unflinching act of witnessing.