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Tel Aviv Noir (Israel)

Edited by: and

Keret and Gavron masterfully assemble some of Israel’s top contemporary writers into a compulsively readable collection.

$15.95 $11.96

Available as an e-book for:

What people are saying…

Gon Ben Ari’s story “Clear Recent History” has won the 2015 PWA shamus Award for Best Short Story.

Gon Ben Ari’s story “Clear Recent History” has been named a finalist for the Private Eye Writers of America Shamus Award for Best P.I. Short Story!

“This consistently strong collection showcases a group of Israeli writers who are not well known in the U.S. Definitely one of the highlights in the long-running Akashic series.”
Booklist, Starred review

“May be the very best in a generally solid series. . . . This collection escapes the limits of formula fiction and sets the bar high for subsequent Noir offerings. The genre is hot, Tel Aviv is exotic, and this volume is outstanding. What’s not to like?”
Library Journal, Starred review

One of Jewish Journal‘s Noteworthy Books for the New Year

“Even in the Holy Land, people find ingenious ways to screw up their own lives, as the latest entry in Akashic’s Noir Series proves. . . . Editors Keret and Gavron stress not what makes Tel Aviv unique but what it has in common with other cities: its people’s endless, often fruitless struggle to cash in on a losing hand.”
Kirkus Reviews

“There’s a marvelous underlying tension to [the stories], a paranoid tinge, as if some vast monstrous conspiracy is lurking behind every misdeed and bad stroke of luck.”
San Francisco Book Review

“The collection reflects much of the daily reality of the city, but not the sort one is likely to read in tour guides. . . . There’s a complexity and virtuosity to plot and prose that leaves the reader with a sense of satisfaction and appreciation, despite the typically devastating denouement of the tales. . . . Superb.”

“Readers interested in exploring the dark side of Tel Aviv will be fascinated by these short pieces of noir literature.”
Times of Israel

“For anyone interested in some of Israel’s best younger writers, as well as the seamy underside of its most populous city, Tel Aviv Noir will keep your adrenaline flowing at any hour.”
Jewish Book Council

“Distinct Tel Aviv neighborhoods . . . lay bare their gritty, less-than-lovely aspects . . . . Even the seamiest side of Tel Aviv is briefly redeemed.”
Lilith Magazine

“This is a terrific collection to pick up, read a story or two, then return to, for different slices of life in Israel.”
Chicago Jewish Star

“Excellent . . . . It is delightful to discover these writers . . . . This book will shine a different light on your next visit to Israel.”
CJ: Voices of Conservative/Masorti Judaism

“An ambitious collection of unique stories told in lucid, and often lurid, detail.”
Jewish News (UK)


Akashic Books continues its groundbreaking series of original noir anthologies, launched in 2004 with Brooklyn Noir. Each story is set in a distinct neighborhood or location within the city of the book.

Brand-new stories by: Etgar Keret, Gadi Taub, Lavie Tidhar, Deakla Keydar, Matan Hermoni, Julia Fermentto, Gon Ben Ari, Shimon Adaf, Alex Epstein, Antonio Ungar, Gai Ad, Assaf Gavron, Silje Bekeng, and Yoav Katz; translated by Yardenne Greenspan.

From the introduction by Etgar Keret:

“In spite of its outwardly warm and polite exterior, Tel Aviv has quite a bit to hide. At any club, most of the people dancing around you to the sounds of a deep-house hit dedicated to peace and love have undergone extensive automatic-weapons training and a hand-grenade tutorial . . . The workers washing the dishes in the fluorescent-lit kitchen of that same club are Eritrean refugees who have crossed the Egyptian border illegally, along with a group of bedouins smuggling some high-quality hash, which the deejay will soon be smoking on his little podium, right by the busy dance floor filled with drunks, coked-up lawyers, and Ukrainian call girls whose pimp keeps their passports in a safe two streets away. Don’t get me wrong—Tel Aviv is a lovely, safe city. Most of the time, for most of its inhabitants. But the stories in this collection describe what happens the rest of the time, to the rest of its inhabitants. From one last cup of coffee at a café targeted by a suicide bomber, through repeat visits from a Yiddish-speaking ghost, to an organized tour of mythological crime scenes that goes terribly wrong, the stories of Tel Aviv Noir reveal the concealed, scarred face of this city that we love so much.”

Read an interview with Etgar Keret at Haaretz. Read interviews with Etgar Keret and Assaf Gavron at JTA and the Jewish Book Council.

Check out these excerpts from Tel Aviv Noir at Haaretz.

Read a feature on Tel Aviv Noir — which includes an interview with Etgar Keret — at the Berkshire Jewish Voice.

Click here to read a feature in Jewish Journal written by Tehran Noir contributor Gina B. Nahai on Tel Aviv Noir‘s joint book launch with Tehran Noir at the New York Public Library.

Read a recap, written by Tel Aviv Noir translator Yardenne Greenspan, of Tel Aviv Noir‘s joint NYPL launch event with Tehran Noir at Asymptote Journal.

Watch an interview with Assaf Gavron at PBS:

Table of Contents


Part I: Encounters
“Sleeping Mask” by Gadi Taub (Beach Hotels Strip)
“Women” by Matan Hermoni (Basel Street)
“The Time-Slip Detective” by Lavie Tidhar (Rabin Square)
“Slow Cooking” by Deakla Keydar (Levinsky Park)

Part II: Estrangements
“Clear Recent History” by Gon Ben Ari (Magen David Square)
“Saïd the Good” by Antonio Ungar (Ajami, Jaffa)
“Swirl” by Silje Bekeng (Rothschild Boulevard)
“My Father’s Kingdom” by Shimon Adaf (Tel Kabir)
“Who’s a Good Boy!” by Julia Farmentto (The Opera Tower)

Part III: Corpses
“The Tour Guide” by Yoav Katz (Neve Sha’anan)
“Death in Pajamas” by Alex Epstein (Masarik Square)
“The Expendables” by Gai Ad (Ben Zion Boulevard)
“Allergies” by Etgar Keret (Florentin)
“Center” by Assaf Gavron (Dizengoff Center)

Book Details

  • Paperback: 280 pages
  • Published: 10/7/14
  • IBSN: 9781617751547
  • e-IBSN: 9781617753350


ETGAR KERET was born in Tel Aviv in 1967. He is the author of five collections of short stories, three children’s books, and three graphic novels. His writing has been published in the New Yorker, Zoetrope, and the Paris Review. His books have been translated into thirty-four languages and published in over thirty-eight countries. In 2007, Keret and Shira Geffen won the Cannes Film Festival’s Caméra d’Or Award for their movie Jellyfish. In 2010, Keret received the Chevalier Medallion of France’s Ordre des Arts et des Lettres. He is the coeditor of Tel Aviv Noir.

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ASSAF GAVRON is an Israeli writer and translator. He is the author of five novels and a short story collection. His fiction has been translated into many languages and adapted to the stage and cinema. He is the winner of several awards including the Israeli Prime Minister’s Creative Award for Authors, Buch für die Stadt in Germany, and Prix Courrier International in France. Gavron is responsible for the highly regarded English-to-Hebrew translations of J.D. Salinger’s Nine Stories, Philip Roth’s Portnoy’s Complaint, and Jonathan Safran Foer’s novels. He is the coeditor of Tel Aviv Noir.

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