From the author of The Memory Monster, a New York Times Notable Book of 2020, comes a gripping examination of the complexities of military service as experienced by Abigail, a psychologist who becomes implicated in the dilemmas soldiers encounter both on and off the battlefield.The tenacious narrator of Yishai Sarid's Victorious is Abigail, a military psychologist and single mother who has spent her career in the Israeli Army. A leading expert in the psychology of combat, Abigail helps soldiers negotiate the trauma of war while instructing commanders on best practices for killing with resilience and efficacy.
As her son Shauli approaches the age for military service, Abigail becomes increasingly involved in the lives of the army's Chief of Staff and those of her patients, and the lines between her personal beliefs and her profession begin to blur. Meanwhile, Abigail's deeply moral father, a clinical psychologist himself, openly condemns her choice to aid Israel's military machine. Yet for Abigail, it's a patriotic duty. Only when gentle-hearted Shauli enlists in the elite and dangerous paratroopers unit are Abigail's own mental defenses finally breached.
As he did in his acclaimed novel The Memory Monster, Yishai Sarid unmasks the contradictions at the heart of patriotism, national identity, and the ongoing conflicts in the Middle East. Victorious is a riveting, provocative inquiry into modern warfare that forces us to ask: what price are we willing to pay for victory?
About the Author
Yishai Sarid was born and raised in Tel Aviv, Israel in 1965. He is the son of senior politician and journalist Yossi Sarid. Between 1974-1977, he lived with his family in the northern town of Kiryat Shmona, near the Lebanon border. Sarid was recruited to Israeli Army in 1983 and served for five years. During his service, he finished the IDF's officers school and served as an intelligence officer. He studied law at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. During 1994-1997, he worked for the Government as an Assistant District Attorney in Tel-Aviv, prosecuting criminal cases. Sarid has a Public Administration Master's Degree (MPA) from the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University (1999). Nowadays he is an active lawyer and arbitrator, practicing mainly civil and administrative law. His law office is located in Tel-Aviv. Alongside his legal career, Sarid writes literature, and so far he has published six novels. His novels have been translated into ten languages and have won literary prizes. Sarid is married to Dr. Racheli Sion-Sarid, a critical care pediatrician, and they have three children. Yardenne Greenspan is a writer and Hebrew translator born in Tel Aviv and based in New York. Her translations have been published by Restless Books, St. Martin's Press, Akashic, Syracuse University, New Vessel Press, Amazon Crossing, and Farrar, Straus & Giroux. Yardenne's writing and translations have appeared in The New Yorker, Haaretz, Guernica, Literary Hub, Blunderbuss, Apogee, The Massachusetts Review, Asymptote, and Words Without Borders, among other publications. She has an MFA from Columbia University and is a regular contributor to Ploughshares.