Rivka Keren. Bittersweet Summer

AGE: 12 up

Winner of the prestigious Ze`ev Prize for children`s literature, this is a sensitive story of a bittersweet summer in the life of an adolescent girl, set in a 1950s rural settlement.
Avigail`s home is joyless, and financial distress adds to the tension between the parents. "If only they would shout at each other and not keep that cold silence," Avigail thinks to herself. She imagines that her older brother did not die in the war, that her parents walk down the street arm in arm and that they live in a spacious house.
But that summer Avigail savors the sweet taste of young love and finds out that her friends have troubles, too. Yonatan, whose loneliness, love of nature and sensitivity attract the local girls, asks Avigail to be his girlfriend. Avigail tells Yonatan her most closely guarded secrets; he, in turn, describes the wonders of nature and tells her about his mother, who died when he was four. Yonatan remains a mysterious, unfathomable character, however, and towards the end of the book he breaks up with Avigail and befriends the miserable Tania. But when Avigail`s grandmother dies, Yonatan arrives to pay a condolence call. Is there a chance that the love between the two will be rekindled?

Illustrations: Ora Eitan

Keren Bittersweet Summer
Title Bittersweet Summer
Author’s Last Name Keren
Author's First Name Rivka
Language(s) Hebrew, German
Genre youth
Publisher (Hebrew) Schocken
Year of Publication (Hebrew) 1986
No. Pages 66 pp
Book title - Hebrew (phonetic) Kayitz Atzuv Kayitz Meushar
Representation Represented by ITHL


German: Vienna, Gabriel, 1999; pback: Weinheim, Beltz, 2001

Anatomy of Love
German: Gerlingen, Bleicher, 2002

The Taste of Honey
German: Giessen, Haland & Wirth, 2004

Mortal Love
English: London, YouWriteOn, 2008; Charleston, CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform, 2013