Dance of the Puppet – Chapter 40

April 3, 2014

purple bookIsrael Book Shop presents Chapter 40 of a new online serial novel, Dance of the Puppet, by Esther Rapaport. Check back for a new chapter every week. Click here for previous chapters. 

Copyright © Israel Bookshop Publications. 

Getting Dovi Brim into yeshivah again.

Working out the problem with the state tests.

Reconciling between the teams from the Chanukah chagigah.

Making sure the teachers were happy with their schedules.

Elchanan, on the small sofa, raised his head from the paper he was reading. “It’s impressive,” he said. “But this list is too short. I’m sure that if you think a bit more, there will be lots to add to this list, much more than the four lines you have here. What about teaching a few girls some valuable lessons? And some adults, too?”

“If I did that, it was really incidental,” Yaffa said with a smile as she took back her paper. “But it really makes no difference. I just wanted to write a few things down to convince myself that I did do something during this time; that I wasn’t just a puppet these past few months, like I was at the beginning.”

“If someone was a puppet here, it was me,” Elchanan returned, his tone indiscernible. “A straw-man, like Moishe Berman put it. And don’t ask me what else he said, because I’m too tired to talk about it right now.”

Keep Reading…


Dance of the Puppet – Chapter 39

March 27, 2014

purple bookIsrael Book Shop presents Chapter 39 of a new online serial novel, Dance of the Puppet, by Esther Rapaport. Check back for a new chapter every week. Click here for previous chapters. 

Copyright © Israel Bookshop Publications. 

The Zol Lakol supermarket was advertising one of its big sale bashes. Yaffa didn’t know exactly how it happened, but somehow, Yael Braun managed to drag her there at the end of a long workday. Towers of cans and packages of pasta were a bit of a strange backdrop for a conversation between them, and Yaffa suspected that Yael’s goal was to speak to her informally, out of the confines of the school. The two of them walked around with a single cart, which Yael had succeeded in finagling at the entrance with difficulty, as dozens of customers vied for every available cart. So far, all it contained was a package of microwave French fries for Elchanan and two bottles of oil that Yael had taken.

“These prices are really good,” Yael remarked. Then, casually, she added, “You know that Malka spoke to me today?”

“Wow, how unusual.” Yaffa chuckled.

“Actually it is a bit unusual, because we haven’t been talking much lately.”

“Why?” Yaffa grew serious. “Is she upset at you? It’s one thing if she’s angry at me, but at you?”

“I don’t know if it’s anger or discomfort. It’s clear that she suspects that I had a part in the whole thing with Mimi, and even if the idea wasn’t mine, that I actively supported it.”

“That’s not true.”

“Try telling her that.” Yael sighed and rummaged around in a huge bin of plastic plates. Keep Reading…


Dance of the Puppet – Chapter 38

March 20, 2014

purple bookIsrael Book Shop presents Chapter 38 of a new online serial novel, Dance of the Puppet, by Esther Rapaport. Check back for a new chapter every week. Click here for previous chapters. 

Copyright © Israel Bookshop Publications. 

“I told you, Menashe,” Mati fumed, “I should have neutralized your son. Our Ehud smelled something, tucked his tail between his legs, and ran. Isn’t it a shame to lose such a good worker?”

“Others will come just like he came,” Menashe said coldly, clasping his hands together on the glass surface of the desk. “My Amnon didn’t do anything, as far as I’m concerned. He was here, heard details that interested him, and—well, and it’s not my business what he did with them. You and I have other things to deal with.”

“Yes, but the question is if Ehud won’t start sniffing around about our other enterprises.” Mati rubbed his hand on the desk. “Because if he does, then what will you say?”

“He won’t sniff around and won’t find anything, the fool.” Menashe laughed. “It will be fine, Mati. Let’s move on. We’ll find other sources.”

“Antiques?”

“Why not? I know the field, and Korman helps us with information.”

“Don’t you think we’ve been burned for good now?” Mati waved the thick receipt book in Menashe’s face.

“Not at all. We’ll change names and move on.” Keep Reading…


Dance of the Puppet – Chapter 37

March 13, 2014

purple bookIsrael Book Shop presents Chapter 37 of a new online serial novel, Dance of the Puppet, by Esther Rapaport. Check back for a new chapter every week. Click here for previous chapters. 

Copyright © Israel Bookshop Publications. 

“Listen, Mister,” Moishe Berman growled. “I have no time for jokes. Go find someone else to play a trick on.”

“It’s not a joke. I am Ehud, the agent for Moreshet, and I would like very much to know why you are accusing me of theft, and what other deception you were referring to in your letter.”

Moishe hesitated. “I’m talking about the theft of Mrs. Wolkovsky’s esrog box,” he said finally. “For years, no one knew that the family had this valuable artifact in its possession. You were invited to give an estimate on its worth—and right after that, it was stolen. Just then, your ads disappeared from the paper and your phone is permanently switched off. You’ll agree with me, Mr. Ehud, or whatever your name is, that it’s very suspicious.”

“Very suspicious.” At home, Elchanan rubbed his fingers on the pages of the newspaper. “And what’s the second incident?”

“You bought a letter worth nearly six thousand dollars for pennies from a guy named Weiner. He discovered the letter for sale for an even higher sum at an antiques dealer. So, while it’s true that in this case, you didn’t really break a law, this kind of behavior exposes you as a swindler who extorts valuable items from innocent people.”

“I hear.”

“Maybe we should hear a bit from you, now—what do you say?” Moishe made signs of doubt to Nosson, who was about to leave. He hadn’t ruled out the possibility that the caller was an imposter looking for a bit of fun. “Would you want to meet with us?” Keep Reading…


Dance of the Puppet – Chapter 36

March 6, 2014

purple bookIsrael Book Shop presents Chapter 36 of a new online serial novel, Dance of the Puppet, by Esther Rapaport. Check back for a new chapter every week. Click here for previous chapters. 

Copyright © Israel Bookshop Publications. 

Moishe Berman protested that, “It’s not necessary,” and that, “I didn’t do anything yet,” and although he was right, Nosson insisted on pressing a few bills into his hand, for his efforts.

“Because of you, we know that we did whatever we could at this point,” Nosson said. “We’ve had Brutney interrogated by the police, and now we see that our only option is to find Ehud. True, it’s more complicated than it seemed at first, but… By the way, do you believe them that it isn’t Brutney?”

“I think so. He was questioned by a top-notch interrogator, and the interrogator clearly specified in his report that the person is completely innocent. It’s not always the unsavory-looking characters who are the thieves, you know.”

“And it’s not clear that the nice-looking guy was the thief, but…”

“But there is a big chance that he is,” Moishe said. “And I haven’t yet given up on finding him, even if at Pelephone his number is registered under a name of someone who has never been born, and no one knows what we want.”

“And you spoke very strongly to them.”

“Very,” Moishe said dejectedly. “They really couldn’t help me. The number is listed under the name of someone Gideon Streicher from Eilat, who was born in 1962. The Interior Ministry has no records of such a person, or even someone with similar information. There is no such person and never was.” Keep Reading…


Dance of the Puppet – Chapter 35

February 27, 2014

purple bookIsrael Book Shop presents Chapter 35 of a new online serial novel, Dance of the Puppet, by Esther Rapaport. Check back for a new chapter every week. Click here for previous chapters. 

Copyright © Israel Bookshop Publications. 

Only at the last second did Malka grab the door and prevent it from slamming behind her. In the principal’s office, the vetting committee, which had gathered that morning to discuss the registration issues, remained silent.

At first, Malka hadn’t understood why they had done it in the school. Usually, one of the committee members offered his or her home, and the location of the meeting remained a guarded secret until it began, so that there would not be any outside disturbances. As it was, they were all working under a lot of constant pressure.

Now everything was clear to her. All of them were apparently aware that this would not be just another meeting, and none of them wanted his or her dining room to be the venue for the tense confrontation. Only she, naïve that she was, had come this morning with no prior knowledge, to hear some names that she perhaps was familiar with and maybe to offer some recommendations for Mimi’s friends.

She stalked into the main office, passing Chana, Faigy, and Sari without giving them a glance, and walked out into the yard. The fury and hurt roiled together in her stomach, forming a hard knot. Now she was standing outside here like a girl who’d gotten thrown out of class and had fled from the corridor so that the principal—or even worse, Mrs. Mann—wouldn’t discover her. Keep Reading…


Dance of the Puppet – Chapter 34

February 20, 2014

purple bookIsrael Book Shop presents Chapter 34 of a new online serial novel, Dance of the Puppet, by Esther Rapaport. Check back for a new chapter every week. Click here for previous chapters. 

Copyright © Israel Bookshop Publications. 

“Ehud?”

“Yes?”

“I thought about the esrog box you saw. Don’t buy it. The old lady is asking much more money than it’s worth.”

“Even though it’s almost two hundred years old?”

“Even so. It’s not worth the money.”

“Whatever you say,” Elchanan said, shifting uncomfortably in his seat. If he would have enough money, he would have gone to buy the esrog box from Mrs. Wolkovsky himself, and used it to form his own antiques collection. But he didn’t have enough money, surely not with the new car.

“Something else, Ehud.”

“Yes?” Elchanan asked. Menashe did not usually call before eleven in the morning, unless it was very urgent.

“We’re upgrading all our employees’ cell phones. I want you to come into the office today to get your new phone.”

Elchanan raised an eyebrow. “I have a trip to Tel Aviv scheduled for today.”

“Okay, so make a detour and come in anyway. Why shouldn’t you have the better model today already?” Keeep Reading…