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The Yassin Family and Lucy in the Sky

Daniella Carmi

Imagine this wild mix: a bewildered Arab couple, an ultra-Orthodox Jewish family, a stern rabbi, firebrand settlers and a withdrawn adolescent. What Daniella Carmi creates with her bold imagination and surrealistic prose moves crazily between the real and the fantastic, the amusing and tragic—a reflection of Israeli reality. Thus, in the title story, an Arab couple who have waited years for a child finally have an opportunity to adopt one. But the fulfillment of their dream is grotesque—instead of a baby they get a slightly autistic Jewish adolescent who relates to reality only through the Beatles’ songs. And so they are caught up in a psychedelic world of yellow submarines, strawberries and marmalade-colored skies—including a rabbi who insists that the Arab parents coach the boy for his bar mitzvah. In Adina and Marcella Seek a Lifeline, the mothers of two soldiers in a coma fight to save their boys from the “poison” that has taken over their bodies and souls. After they steal urine in the hospital—part of a scheme so the boys never return to the military—a strangely hilarious bond grows between the two very different women, as both struggle for sanity in a world that has turned its back on their sons.

The novel brings together a comedy of manners with a thriller background… [Carmi] draws a picture of the wacky or even Kafkaesque everyday life in her own country, of which fairly little is known [to outsiders].

Livres Hebdo


Here is a novel that oddly makes the reader feel good while telling a truly sad story. This is due largely to the talent of the author who, from a political drama (the treatment of the Arab minority in Israel) and a personal one (the difficult integration of an autistic child into society) made a tale as light and dramatic as a ballad of the Beatles.




An oblique and poetic novel… from a quietly ironic perspective… What Daniella Carmi succeeds in creating, in these very unusual everyday scenes, is nothing less than the literary concentrate of the vibrant, multi-ethnic world of Israel.    

Die Welt

An extraordinary, wild mix between a psychedelic tale, a social fantasy, a humoresque and a profound lampoon... Carmi has an original and bold literary voice.

Its uniqueness lies in the humor that Carmi manages to extract from the carnival-like reality in Israel.

There is magic in Carmi's novellas... A grotesque and colorful struggle
that reminds one of a wonderful, sad circus.
Achbar Ha'Ir  

English translation of The Yassin Family  available (for publishers only)

Carmi  Yassin Family and Lucy in the Sky_Heb
Title The Yassin Family and Lucy in the Sky
Author’s Last Name Carmi
Author's First Name Daniella
Language(s) Hebrew, German, French, Italian
Genre novellas
Publisher (Hebrew) Am Oved
Year of Publication (Hebrew) 2009
No. Pages 303 pp.
Book title - Hebrew (phonetic) Mishpachat Yassin Ve-Luci Ba-Shamayim
Representation Represented by ITHL


Italian (The Yassin Family): Rome, Riuniti, 2011; Milan, Tiqqun, 2016 
Italian (Adina and Carmela Seek a Lifeline): Rome, Riuniti, forthcoming
German: Berlin, Berlin Verlag, 2013
French (The Yassin Family): Paris, L'Antilope, 2017
Congratulations to Zeruya Shalev and Shifra Horn for receiving the 2017 Adei Wizo Prize.

Ayelet Gundar-Goshen's "Waking Lions" is longlisted for the 2018 International Dublin Literary Award
Ayelet Gundar-Goshen's "Waking Lions" is longlisted for the 2018 International Dublin Literary Award! The books on the longlist are selected by 400 libraries worldwide. Titles are nominated on the basis of ‘high literary merit’ as determined by the nominating library.
The second edition of the Letters of Israel festival will take place in Paris from September 8 to 18, 2017
After the success of its first edition, the Lettres d'Israël festival is gaining momentum, with an enriched program: meetings, conversations, readings , Theater, major authors and discoveries. Zeruya Shalev, Orly Castel-bloom, Ayelet Gundar-Goshen, Iris Argaman, and many more will participate. Click here for the full program:
Call for application: Artists in Residence Programme in Austria. Please note the deadline: September 18th, 2017.
In co-operation with KulturKontakt Austria, the Austrian Federal Chancellery makes available 50 residencies to visual artists / art photographers / composers / video and media artists / writers / literary translators and arts and cultural educators in Vienna and Salzburg for the year 2018. For more details:
Yizhak Mayer: "Meet the Author" Event
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ITHL director on Grossman's win
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Chana Bloch dies at 77
Chana Bloch, a revered poet and translator from Hebrew and Yiddish, has sadly passed away earlier this month. Among her many remarkable achievements is the wonderful translation of a collection of poems by Dahlia Ravikovitch​ (W. W. Norton & Company). Chana will be greatly missed.
Yitzchak Mayer's personal website goes live
English edition of Yitzchak Mayer's amazing "Silent Letter" is about to come out with Mosaic Press. Learn more about the author's incredible life story on his brand new website.
Dayan on feminism and writing
Following the release of "Transitions" in English, Yael Dayan talks to Lilith Magazine about her past aspirations and present pursuits. Click here to read the full interview.
Gundar-Goshen's Op-Ed for Time
To mark the US publication of "Waking Lions" Ayelet Gundar-Goshen talks about the refugee crisis, internal walls and people behind them in the op-ed for Time. Click here to read the article.
MHL - New webzine starting soon!