'They say you never get over your first love and in my case, they were right.
But, typically greedy, my first love was a whole race of people - the Jews.' Bristling with strong opinions and fizzing with wit, Julie Burchill narrates the story of how a chance discovery of her father's copy of a World at War magazine about the holocaust kindled an obsessive love that still sustains her today.
The book follows the course of this affair from her days as a rock journalist pretending to be Jewish, through her volatile marriage to a Jewish man, her public spats with anti-Israel writers, her dislike of Jewish humour but love for the state of Israel, her refusal to watch Schindler's List and other films or books that turn the holocaust into entertainment, to her attempts to learn Hebrew and eventual exile from her local synagogue for being to pro-Israel.
Unchosen is not a book for anyone who wants balance or an even-handed historical account of modern Jewish culture.
It's a spiritual autobiography turned up to the maximum, a book that manages to range from the movingly personal to the raucously outrageous in the space of a single paragraph. No-one else but Julie Burchill would have even attempted a book like this.
This is the subject that matters the most to her and Unchosen is the most difficult, most important book she's ever tried to write.
Fortunately for us, it's also the best.
- Format: Hardback
- Pages: 240 pages
- Publisher: Cornerstone
- Publication Date: 09/10/2014
- Category: Memoirs
- ISBN: 9781908717955