Dorothea Shefer Vanson  |   Writer, Editor, Translator




For most of my working life I have been a translator and editor. In addition, I have always written, and have now decided that itís time my novels saw the light of day. So please take a look at them on this page and on my Amazon page:


My blog, which I update weekly, contains book reviews and articles about life in general, and in Israel in particular, and can be found at:


It also appears in journals and websites in England (

, Israel (

and the US (


If you decide to buy or download any of my books, I'll be very grateful. I'll be even more grateful if you can bring yourself to write a review on Amazon.


Contact me



In 1966 the divided city of Jerusalem is a sleepy backwater, but the students at the university are determined to enjoy life. Three graduate students, Brian from Australia, Batsheva from the U.S.A., and Cynthia from England, are involved in life on campus and the cityís throbbing night-time scene. Batsheva and her husband are trying to get their discotheque up and running, Cynthia is plagued by a succession of inept boyfriends while trying to fend off the unwelcome attentions of one of the professors, and Brian is struggling to maintain his role as husband and father. The political situation as well as therelations between the three individuals, as well as between them and society in general, form the subject of this novel.

Buy Rootless In Zion







The year is 1983, war is raging to the north of Israel as the lives of three women, and the husband of one of them, intersect in a Jerusalem neighborhood. While the life of each character is different, the interaction between them and their respective memories forms the core of the book. The physical reality and atmosphere of Jerusalem also have a unique role to play. The clandestine affair between the husband of one of the characters and her friend overshadows the relations between all of them, causing anguish and conflict. One of the friends is bringing up her daughter on her own while still suffering from abuse by her ex-husband, while another is unable to overcome her grief at the loss of her mother.A marriage gets into difficulties as the wife struggles to come to terms with her life and the challenge of coping with her two young sons.

Buy Friends, Neighbors, Traitors










An eccentric woman imposes herself on a family living in Jerusalem at a time of disturbances in the Old City. their orderly way of life is disrupted, bringing Tamar, devoted wife and mother, to the verge of a breakdown. Her husband, Reuben, does his best to keep things on an even keel but is distracted by his obsession with his young secretary. Matters come to a head when Tamarís boss absconds with her colleague and the firmís funds, and she finds Reuben in a compromising situation.



Buy A Ruffled Calm on Amazon









It is 1985 and Israeli paleontologist Avi Samuels is spending a year in the sleepy university town of Seabrook, Nebraska. He encounters hostility from the head of his department as well as anti-Semitism in the local paper. His expedition to obtain rock specimens is beset by mishaps and bad weather, his wife has an affair with the art teacher at the local community college, and their children get into trouble at school. Finally, Avi reveals a plot by the neo-Nazi party to wreak havoc throughout America.



Buy All Quiet On The Midwestern Plains On Amazon











In search of the good life, Sophie and John decide to spend their retirement in France. They eventually find the house of their dreams, but achieving their goal is impeded by a hostile neighbor and their own ignorance of the French language and culture. Various characters, both expats and locals, aid and abet them in their efforts. Julie Smithers, a young woman who has come to France to escape an unhappy romance and is trying to write a book, embarks on an affair with the handyman who comes to repair a leaking faucet in her house. The denouement comes when the hostile neighbor enters John and Sophie's house.



Buy Chasing Dreams And Flies at












Levi Koenig, A Contemporary King Lear explores the relations between three sisters, their attitude to their ailing father, and the way in which each one strives to juggle home, family, work, and love-life while tending to her fatherís needs. Their relations come under additional strain when it transpires that their father has been sending money to an unknown woman



Buy Levi Koenig at











Inspired by family documents and correspondence brought out of Germany by the authorís father, Time Out Of Joint - The Fate Of A Family describes the events unfolding in Europe between 1924 and 1942 and their effect on the members of the van Dornbach family.





Buy Time Out Of Joint at







Dorothea Shefer-Vanson's first book, The Balancing Game describes the strange and unique world occupied by a Jewish child, the daughter of refugees from Hitlerís Germany, growing up in post-war London and living in a run-down neighborhood. Interwoven are chapters describing the experiences of a young woman living in Jerusalem and expecting her first child in the weeks before and during the Six-Day War of 1967.


Buy The Balancing Game at