A Guide for the Perplexed

A Guide for the Perplexed

A Novel

Book - 2013
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Software prodigy Josie Ashkenazi has invented an application that records everything its users do. When an Egyptian library invites her to visit as a consultant, her jealous sister Judith persuades her to go. But in Egypt's postrevolutionary chaos, Josie is abducted--leaving Judith free to take over Josie's life at home, including her husband and daughter, while Josie's talent for preserving memories becomes a surprising test of her empathy and her only means of escape.A century earlier, another traveler arrives in Egypt: Solomon Schechter, a Cambridge professor hunting for a medieval archive hidden in a Cairo synagogue. Both he and Josie are haunted by the work of the medieval philosopher Moses Maimonides, a doctor and rationalist who sought to reconcile faith and science, destiny and free will. But what Schechter finds, as he tracks down the remnants of a thousand-year-old community's once-vibrant life, will reveal the power and perils of what Josie's ingenious work brings into being: a world where nothing is ever forgotten.An engrossing adventure that intertwines stories from Genesis, medieval philosophy, and the digital frontier, A Guide for the Perplexed is a novel of profound inner meaning and astonishing imagination.
Publisher: New York :, W. W. Norton & Company,, [2013]
Edition: First Edition
ISBN: 9780393064896
Branch Call Number: FICTION Horn 2013
Characteristics: 342 pages ; 25 cm


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May 02, 2016

I loved this book. As another reviewer wrote, it is a fascinating mix of the tech world, scholarly Judaism, memory and family. Although the principle religions within the story are Judaism and Islam, the premise of changing the past is truly a Buddhist one.
A great read, a thought provoking meal.

multcolib_alisonk Oct 30, 2014

One of those books that keeps tumbling around in my brain though I read it a while ago. I loved the intersection of technology and history, and the what ifs around memory, meaning and the self. I also learned about Genizahs - repositories for what we librarians called 'weeded' documents, and the sacred way that they are treated. The timeline can be a bit confusing, but the questions Horn raises are fascinating. This would make an excellent book for discussion.

Apr 23, 2014

A Guide for the Perplexed is the title of a book by Maimonides, or Rabbi Moshe Ben Maimon, so it's use at the title of this book is rather bizarre.


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