A Tale of Love and Darkness

Front Cover
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, Nov 1, 2005 - Biography & Autobiography - 544 pages
303 Reviews
Winner of the National Jewish Book Award

International Bestseller

"[An] ingenious work that circles around the rise of a state, the tragic destiny of a mother, a boy’s creation of a new self." — The New Yorker

A family saga and a magical self-portrait of a writer who witnessed the birth of a nation and lived through its turbulent history. A Tale of Love and Darkness is the story of a boy who grows up in war-torn Jerusalem, in a small apartment crowded with books in twelve languages and relatives speaking nearly as many. The story of an adolescent whose life has been changed forever by his mother’s suicide. The story of a man who leaves the constraints of his family and community to join a kibbutz, change his name, marry, have children. The story of a writer who becomes an active participant in the political life of his nation. "One of the most enchanting and deeply satisfying books that I have read in many years." — New Republic

What people are saying - Write a review

User ratings

5 stars
4 stars
3 stars
2 stars
1 star

Review: A Tale of Love and Darkness

User Review  - Goodreads

I have no idea why I found this book as dull as I did. Oz's prose read as self important and prattling, his family and personal pride eclipsing much of the reality from his writing. At the heart of ... Read full review

Review: A Tale of Love and Darkness

User Review  - Goodreads

I started this book with high expectations. The read indeed rewards you with some brilliant passages - Oz is, without a doubt, a very gifted writer, and yet, this ultimately turned against him. I had ... Read full review

Selected pages


About the Author
About the Translator
Back Flap
Back Cover

Other editions - View all

Common terms and phrases

About the author (2005)

Amos Oz was born in Jerusalem in 1939. He is the author of fourteen novels and collections of short fiction, and numerous works of nonfiction. His acclaimed memoir A Tale of Love and Darkness was an international bestseller and recipient of the prestigious Goethe prize, as well as the National Jewish Book Award. Scenes from Village Life, a New York Times Notable Book, was awarded the Prix Méditerranée Étranger in 2010. He lives in Tel Aviv, Israel.

Nicholas de Lange is a professor at the University of Cambridge and a renowned translator. He has translated Amos Oz’s work since the 1960s.

Bibliographic information