Novelist Fred Snyder weaves the divinations of ancient prophet Ezekiel into a suspenseful story of family conflicts, international unrest, and deliverance in Ezekiel’s Vision.
Robert Zadok is a young American college graduate determined to make aliyah despite pressures from his family to assimilate. The grandson of a scholar of the prophet Ezekiel, Zadok identifies with his ancestors’ Zionist principles, and believes he will always be conflicted between those ideals and his connections to his parents. His dream of contributing to Israel’s rebirth is so strong that he defies his family’s wishes, and sacrifices both his lover and his material comforts to emigrate. Once there, he discovers a city where his grandfather’s teachings are still followed, and he begins to study a forgotten manuscript that unlocks the mysteries of Ezekiel’s often misunderstood prophecy. Zadok learns the secrets passed down through generations of mystics, but does not yet realize how powerful this knowledge would come to be.
Ezekiel’s Vision brings to life the controversy surrounding Jewish continuity, the relevance of prophecies to contemporary crises, and the tough choices we often face within our relationships – both personal and international. In a story that weaves mysticism, prophecy, and kabalistic secrets with the everyday challenges of marriage and family life, Fred Snyder illuminates the many conflicts facing Jewish people today.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Fred Snyder was born in Boston, Massachusetts where he attended Boston University graduating with a degree in Industrial Engineering. He has been a Senior Vice President for the Discovery Channel, and Bradlees, Inc., and has also worked at DeLoitte & Touche, and Circuit City Stores. Currently, he is a Senior Vice President and Division Director for a Fortune 200 Corporation.
Aside from publishing numerous articles for management journals, Snyder has written many pieces for U.S. Jewish weeklies highlighting the contemporary challenges to Jewish Continuity while referencing historical parallels. He has visited and lived in Israel at different points in his life and has become an active supporter of numerous Jewish causes. A father of four, Fred and his wife Gail live in Massachusetts.
'One more thing; in the book, Israel is under attack from the north, just like the most recent situation.'
So said Fred Snyder, the author of the new book 'Ezekiel's Vision,' about one of the plot developments that takes place in this taut new thriller. Prophesies, danger, intrigue, and an ending that is as interesting as it is suspenseful are all here, with a backdrop of Judaism and Israel to boot.
Written in Hemingway-esque prose, with each sentence being very curt and to the point, the book starts off in the 1930s, when Ruben Zadok, a biblical scholar, is murdered in Israel along with two other people. Fast forward to Boston in 1961, where readers are introduced to the main character of the novel, Bob Zadok, who is the grandson of Ruben, and like Ruben, he yearns to make aliyah and move to Israel. After finally making the tough decision to move, against the wishes of his parents, Bob joins the army, gets promoted and eventually ends up becoming a colonel in the Israeli army.
One day, while on his honeymoon, he stumbles onto a museum dedicated to his grandfather and his writings, especially his work on the prophet Ezekiel and the prophecies that he made. One thing leads to another, and without giving away too much, these prophecies become much more pressing when Israel is under attack from Arabs to the north.
What happens next is both thrilling and exciting, making it impossible to put this book down until you have completed it. 'Even though there are some aspects of this book that are true to my life, I do not want people to think that this is autobiographical in any way,' said Snyder, who made aliyah when he was 23 years old but moved back because he missed his family.
One of the most interesting aspects of this book is the fact that while there are some otherworldly elements at its core, this is a story about someone trying to make sense of his life from moving to a far away country, to dealing with a stressful career, family obligations, a cancer scare and much more. These little touches in the book turn it from another run-of-the-mill story to something that everyone can get behind.
Who here has not at one time or another felt career or family pressures? Who has not had to make an immense decision that would affect our lives for years to come? This is what makes the book a must read.
Snyder writes: 'His grandfather had experienced a vision by a river, not Ezekiel's vision, but he had nonetheless been inspired to write, just as Ezekiel has been inspired to write and to influence the Jews.'
People find inspiration to write from all different places and sources. When I spoke to Snyder on the phone, he said that this novel had taken him twenty years to write. He would write, then get creative block, put the book down and come back to it when the time was right. After reading Ezekiel's Vision, here is to hoping that it does not take him another 20 years to write his next book.
Bret Ratner Boston Jewish Advocate November 23, 2006
The story plot : - Creative; the introductory paragraph to each chapter is appropriate. - The Prologue is fitting for the story. - The stress of leaving family behind is realistic for anyone who has made aliyah alone. -Chana Givon Co-chair in Israel of the Unity Coalition for Israel of the Knesset Christian Allies Caucus