The Best Books of 2020, Chosen by Mosaic Authors (Part II)

Five more of our regular writers pick several favorites each, featuring what Jews are for, magicians, assassins, call signs, chaos, separated siblings, and more.


Observation
Dec. 17 2020
About the authors

Haviv Rettig Gur is the senior analyst for the Times of Israel.

Ed Husain is a visiting professor at Georgetown University where he will be teaching a summer course on Judaism, Islam, and Western Civilization.

Martin Kramer teaches Middle Eastern history and served as founding president at Shalem College in Jerusalem, and is the Walter P. Stern fellow at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy.

Robert W. Nicholson is the president of the Philos Project. A former Marine and Tikvah fellow, his writing has appeared in the Wall Street JournalProvidenceMosaic, and elsewhere.

Ruth R. Wisse is a Mosaic columnist, professor emerita of Yiddish and comparative literatures at Harvard and a distinguished senior fellow at the Tikvah Fund. Her memoir Free as a Jew: a Personal Memoir of National Self-Liberation, chapters of which appeared in Mosaic in somewhat different form, will be published in September.

David Wolpe is rabbi of Sinai Temple in Los Angeles and the author of, among other books, Why Be Jewish? and Why Faith Matters. He can be found on Twitter @RabbiWolpe.

To mark the close of 2020, we asked several of our writers to name the best three books they’ve read this year, and briefly to explain their choices. We have encouraged them to pick two recent books, and one older one. The first five of their answers appeared yesterday; the next six appear below in alphabetical order. The rest will appear tomorrow. (Unless otherwise noted, all books were published in 2020. Classic books are listed by their original publication dates.)

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More about: Arts & Culture, Best Books of the Year, History & Ideas