PEOPLE OF A PRAYER
A New Murder Mystery
by Award winning author,
MICHAEL NEIL ISAACSON
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"People of a Prayer" is a really "smart" mystery - terrific narrative; interesting, complex, characters; and witty dialogue. Sixty-one year old Marc Jacobs is a Los Angeles-based screenwriter with great past credits and awards, but suddenly his agent has little new work to offer. On top of his work troubles, Marc's wife (Sela) has walked out after a long marriage. Coincidentally, Marc's sister who lives in Delray Beach, Florida tells him about Mel Golden, a wealthy ninety-something Holocaust survivor who is willing to pay someone $70,000 to ghost-write his autobiography. Figuring this will keep him flush financially while new screenwriting opportunities turn up, Mac accepts the job. Mel turns out to be a complicated man with a secret that ultimately results in a knife plunged into his heart. The unanswered question of Mel's murder compels Marc to pursue his own investigation. Along the way we learn about Hollywood, music, retirement in Florida, much more. A great debut novel"
Deborah Shlion, Novelist of "Silent Survivor"
"I just finished the book. I love suprise endings! GREAT JOB..."
-Stewart Taylor, Personnel Manager of the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra
"I just finished reading People of a Prayer and I am still shaking. On so many fronts, the book deals with compelling ideas - most prominently the Holocaust, from a very personal point of view. It also deals with illness, aging, loss, interpersonal relationships, holding on, and letting go;The book is fascinating. I read until late last night and finished it just now. I have known men like Mel, and have seen first-hand the "I WIN" philosophy in action. This book is the REAL DEAL, and its insights are right on the mark." - Marcia Hain Engel, author
BRING MICHAEL ISAACSON TO YOUR COMMUNITY!
Schedule Dr. Isaacson for a lecture and book signing. E-mail email@example.com or call 561-877-8638 for more information.
Dr. Michael Isaacson's work is of the highest quality. This book seems to extend that quality not just to music, but to writing about music. It is a genuine contribution to the field.
- Dr. Lawrence Hoffman, Professor of Liturgy, Hebrew Union College
If anyone knows Jewish Music today it is Dr. Isaacson and this book is a testament to his prodigious knowledge and skill. This is a wonderful book.
- Rabbi Lawrence Kushner, author
Michael Isaacson combines a life time of compositional know-how with an informed understanding of Jewish literary midrash to tackle the questions of authenticity and innovation in Jewish music. He offers us valuable tools with which to listen, understand, and remember much of the music that defines our Jewish lives. Dr. Isaacson's experiences creating effective dramatic music for live theatre, television and film come into play to clarify issues in worship music. Jewish Music As Midrash: What Makes Music Jewish? is a profoundly original book that has few models preceding it but is certain to set a course for sacred artistic studies well into the future.
- Samuel Adler, Professor of Composition, Juilliard School of Music
Michael Isaacson's analytic observations of synagogue music past and present and his vast accomplishments in composing sacred, secular, and media music combine to offer the reader and listener a privileged view of where Jewish music has been, where it is today, and where it has the potential of developing in the future. This is a book that is sure to benefit Jewish and non-Jewish professionals, lay-persons, and all who are fascinated with the stimulating question "What, in fact, is Jewish music?" The two CDs of Isaacson's midrashic musical examples, which are included, are more than worth the price of the book alone.
- Rabbi Stephen S. Pearce, Senior Rabbi Congregation Emanu-El, San Francisco
Although the subject of synagogue music has been explored in numerous books, the composer’s voice is conspicuously scarce. When this insider’s perspective does appear in a bound volume, it almost always comes in the form of an anthology, such as the collected writings of Abraham W. Binder (1971), Herbert Fromm (1978) and William Sharlin (2008). Especially rare—and especially valuable—is the composer’s book that follows a logical sequence of chapters, tackles a central theme and develops a sustained argument. Perhaps the only publication of this kind is Michael Isaacson’s Jewish Music as Midrash: What Makes Music Jewish? Isaacson, whose credits include hundreds of compositions and fifty recorded albums, is among the most renowned contemporary creators of Jewish sacred song. His thoughtful and inventive treatment of texts, which he calls “musical midrash,” is outlined in fifteen lucid chapters combining music theory, personal anecdotes, professional observations and various sources of wisdom. CLICK HERE to read the full review.
- Cantor Jonathan L. Friedmann, Ph.D. at theDailyRabbi.com