Announcing MAROR!


Head of Zeus is delighted to be publishing Maror by Lavie Tidhar, an angry and moving novel that chronicles the creation of the state of Israel through the lives of its people.  

CEO and Publisher Nicolas Cheetham acquired UK & Commonwealth, excluding Canada, rights for Maror for Head of Zeus from John Berlyne at the Zeno Agency and will be published in hardback and ebook, under the Apollo fiction imprint, on 4th August 2022. 

Maror poses to the reader a central question – how do you build a nation?

Across four decades and three continents, Lavie Tidhar seeks to give an answer. It takes statesmen and soldiers, farmers and factory workers, of course. But it also takes thieves, prostitutes and policemen. 

Nation-building demands sacrifice. And one man knows exactly where those bodies are buried: Cohen, a man who loves his country. A reasonable man for unreasonable times. 

A car bomb in the back streets of Tel Aviv. A diamond robbery in Haifa. Civil war in Lebanon. Rebel fighters in the Colombian jungle. An assassination in Cancún. 

How do they all connect? Only Cohen knows. 

Lavie Tidhar draws on his own experience growing up in Israel and on the nation’s turbulent recent history to tell an authentic story about creating your own identity – on a personal and a universal level.

Lavie Tidhar said, ‘James Joyce once said he couldn’t write of Ireland until he was away from her, and perhaps this is true of anyone’s home – that to be seen clearly it must be viewed from afar, with a love no longer blinded to the flaws. My publisher Nicolas Cheetham told me to write the book I always wanted to write, and the result is Maror: a huge, painstaking fictional exploration of very real events. It led me like a historical detective from one hard-to-believe event to the next. Guided by a retired crime beat reporter, extensive newspaper archives and my father’s colourful stories, as well as my own recollections of growing up in Israel in the 80s and 90s, I began to piece together the true and secret story of a country I thought I knew but didn’t.

It is a big book, in all senses of the word. It was exhilarating to write. And I can’t wait to share it.

Nicolas Cheetham said, ‘Maror is the book Lavie Tidhar was meant to write. It is the book only Lavie could write. Over 560 pages, Lavie channels all his award-winning, subversive brilliance (not to mention his encyclopaedic knowledge of Israeli pop music) into a mosaic of stories and characters. It’s a story of hope, and the many ways hope can die.’

Lavie Tidhar was born just ten miles from Armageddon and grew up on a kibbutz in northern Israel. He has since made his home in London. He won the Jerwood Fiction Uncovered Prize for Best British Fiction, was twice longlisted for the International Dublin Literary Award and was shortlisted for the CWA Dagger Award and the Rome Prize. He co-wrote Art and War: Poetry, Pulp and Politics in Israeli Fiction, and is a columnist for the Washington Post.