Bone to the Bone chronicles the story of a revolutionary, a man born at the start of the century who carries its history in his flesh. A Russian Jew, Avigdor Berkov, came to Eretz Israel in the 1920s, abandoned the Zionist enterprise as being of limited revolutionary potential and returned to the USSR, to the true laboratory of the revolution, only for it to reject him. In the violent aftermath of the Bolshevik Revolution, he is doomed to pay the price of being one of its vigorous proponents. He survives Soviet interrogation, torture and imprisonment and returns eventually to Israel to meet his family and friends and to live the rest of his life "beyond history." But his inner world is too turbulent. He cannot be bourgeois; he is a revolutionary. He is unimpressed by his newly rich daughter; he tries to be a father to his 43-year-old paralyzed son, but the stern ideology, the single-mindedness adopted with his revolutionary zeal, bar him from acquiring new passions. He attempts to recover the experiences which his overpowering commitment denied him, and tries to come to terms with his past and his family.
Compelling...an oblique and ironic love story.
Los Angeles Times
Shaham's tale is a tragic, brooding, noble and earnest...portrayal of one man....He has constructed a sweeping plot that continually intersects with our century's history.
Master novelist...Shaham plays out Berkov's story ever so gradually, with cunning timing and utterly convincing detail..