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English translation available (for publishers only)

Fear of Driving in the Fast Lane

Michal and Alma, friends at high school, set themselves two goals for the summer vacation: to find boyfriends—a priority—and jobs. Michal finds a boyfriend without really trying, but Michal has neither boyfriend nor job—only arguments with her mom and the letters her father left her. After he died, Mom gave her his computer with all the letters he wrote her while he was ill. But it is only now, two years later, that Alma has dared to read them. And then, after Alma was sure this would be the saddest, least fun vacation ever, things change. She meets an unusual man, who looks like an aging movie star, and he introduces her to an extraordinary woman by the name of Metullah. Metullah owns a café, has shining eyes, sharp senses and she’s good at guessing what her customers want. Alma starts working in the café, and aside from learning how to make a finely chopped vegetable salad, she also learns how to get to know people—for example Miri, an energetic and optimistic woman who for some reason is scared of driving. “If I could, I’d introduce you to my son Yoav,” says Miri, and Alma thinks that perhaps she has found not only work but a boyfriend too.

With sensitivity and humor, Vital Gilad reveals the world of a young girl coping with the loss of her father and then discovering the ability to believe in herself and move ahead without fear.

Title Fear of Driving in the Fast Lane
Writer's Last Name Vital Gilad
Writer's First Name Ruthie
Genre Children
Ages 11 up
Publisher (Hebrew) Keren
No. Pages 102pp.
Book title - Hebrew (phonetic) Ha-Pachad Lidros Shliach Pitza
  • “The book undoubtedly belongs to the “superb” category. The biggest compliment I can pay it is that when I finished reading it I felt that this was a soul-sister to the marvelous Walk Two Moons by Sharon Creech. And that is a tremendous compliment…. This is a mature book, deep, and full of love for humanity. There are not many such books for young people. And it is so beautifully written. ”

    Kore Basfarim
  • “A book with cinematic design … The content is moving and powerful, and the main character is convincing, and therefore the plot works … Vital Gilad has written a book that touches the heart, and which will certainly have a tangible effect on the hearts of young readers, male and female. ”

  • “A finely written coming-of-age novel … Vital Gilad’s writing is rich in metaphors and is written in lyrical prose… A recommendable work that touches honestly and credible on the subject of the death of a parent and its effect on the adolescent. ”