This is a Hebrew book by an Israeli author. For some reason, the suggested English translation in the inside cover is "Beaufort" (the name of the fortress in this book), which I think is much less becoming than a direct translation of the Hebrew "im yesh gan eden" (If there's heaven). Israeli publishing houses, it seems, suck not only in translating foreign titles to Hebrew, but in translating Hebrew titles to foreign languages as well. Uh oh... This book is narrated by Erez - a lieutenant of the Israeli army during the occupation of southern Lebanon. He leads a group infantry protecting Beaufort - one of the most important outposts in the area, trying to prevent Hizbullah guerilla from bombing northern Israel. Written in a very light and readable style this book is highly believable - the usage of slang is terrific, and the manner of talk between the soldiers feels very real. The dialogues and monologues uncover a difficult reality, in which young soldiers give their lives for the country, fighting and living in difficult conditions, watch their friends die or become mutilated, and wait for vacations home. The author conveys the mindset of the soldiers very well, and the book is at once funny and tragic, at times a random whirlwind of thoughts, expressing quite successfully what goes inside the head of Erez in difficult situations. Besides the main story line, the author manages to squeeze in thoughts on politics, war, amazing friendship and love, making the book very satisfying overall. I really think it's one of the best, if not the best Israeli book I have ever read. I highly recommend it, although I don't think it's easily translatable.

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