Jewish Book: The Society of the Beautiful People of Tobie Nathan

Born poor in the miserable Jewish quarter of old Cairo, the darling of ‘Haret el-Yahoud, the Jewish alleyway, the flamboyant young man, whose clubs and bars attract Cairo’s high society, arrives without family, without friends, without a penny.

Only the ghost of Dieter Boehm, his Nazi torturer, accompanies him. Zohar flees a country of fire and blood, a sick society in the image of its king, Farouk, softened by lust and hated by his people, a society necrosed by the rise of the Muslim Brotherhood, the infiltration of the former Nazis into the Egyptian army, the pogroms against the Jews and the rebellion led by the powerful Gamal Abd el-Nasser.

In France, his obsession will be linked to that of Aaron, Lucien and Paulette, a trio united in the desire to tackle the past that haunts them. Against the executioners of their past, the same process: two bullets in the head, the first for revenge, the second for signature.

This is the story that his son François will discover, the one that will make him understand the mysterious promise made by his father to the Society of Beautiful People. And that he will decide to pursue.

Between historical fresco and great novel, from the dark hours of Egypt to the buried part of the French memory, Tobie Nathan magnificently writes a teeming and tragic epic, weighed down by the past, with its characters, their memories and their journey.

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