An Israeli Author's Manual for Writing an Agatha Christie-type Crime Novel

Maya Arad's new novel offers an accelerated lesson in the principles of the detective story. It’s intellectual, illuminating and brilliant — but also cold, mechanical and not particularly suspenseful.

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“Me’ahorei Hahar” (“Behind the Mountain”), by Maya Arad, Xargol and Modan publishers (in Hebrew), 327 pps, 98 shekels ($26)