The Deadliest Fever: A Miriam bat Isaac Mystery in Ancient Alexandria

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Black Opal Books, Apr 28, 2018 - Fiction - 250 pages

Miriam bat Isaac, a budding alchemist and amateur sleuth in first-century CE Alexandria, is concerned when she learns that the Torah mantle in Alexandria’s Great Synagogue has been damaged. She takes the mantle to Judah, a renowned jeweler and the unrequited love of her life. He repairs the mantle but assures her that the gems are genuine. Like Miriam, he is astonished that someone would damage the mantle but leave the gems behind. But Miriam suspects that something is not right. She is even more convinced that something is amiss, a few days later, when an anonymous note arrives, warning that the security at the Synagogue needs to be increased. As she digs for answers, she learns that some of the people she trusts are not what they seem, and she may not survive long enough to uncover the truth…

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About the author (2018)

June Trop and her twin sister Gail wrote their first story, “The Steam Shavel [sic],” when they were six years old growing up in rural New Jersey. They sold it to their brother Everett for two cents. “I don’t remember how I spent my share,” Trop says. “You could buy a fistful of candy for a penny in those days, but ever since then, I wanted to be a writer.”

As an award-winning middle school science teacher, Trop used storytelling to capture her students’ imagination and interest in scientific concepts. Years later as a professor of teacher education, she focused her research on the practical knowledge teachers construct and communicate through storytelling. Her first book, From Lesson Plans to Power Struggles (Corwin Press, 2009), is based on the stories new teachers told about their first classroom experiences.

Now associate professor emerita at the State University of New York at New Paltz, she devotes her time to writing The Miriam bat Isaac Mystery Series. Her heroine is based on the personage of Maria Hebrea, the legendary founder of Western alchemy, who developed the concepts and apparatus alchemists and chemists would use for 1500 years.

Trop lives with her husband Paul Zuckerman in New Paltz, where she is breathlessly recording her plucky heroine’s next life-or-death exploit.

 

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