The Hyena Murders (The Jerusalem Mysteries #2) (Paperback)

The Hyena Murders (The Jerusalem Mysteries #2) By Ellen Frankel Cover Image
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This is book number 2 in the The Jerusalem Mysteries series.


A murder plot seeded in the wild mountains of Ethiopia bears its poison fruit years later in modern Jerusalem as a serial killer targets a prominent Beta Israel family. Confronting racial politics, police corruption, and human trafficking, Israeli intelligence agent Maya Rimon tries to stop the killer before his double-edged blade finishes off the entire family.

A refugee’s discovery of a buried diary in a UN camp holds the key to solving a series of vicious murders in Jerusalem.

Israeli intelligence agent Maya Rimon teams up with Ethiopian activist lawyer, Dani Solomon, to track down the serial killer, who has targeted the prominent Ethiopian Jewish family of Moshe Aklilu, a member of the Israeli Knesset. The murderer leaves cryptic clues on the victims’ bodies: slash wounds made by a double-edged ceremonial knife, images of hyenas, and vengeful spirit animals associated with Jews back in Ethiopia.

Because Aklilu is a member of the Knesset, Maya Rimon, an agent of the Service, Israel’s elite Intelligence agency, takes on the case. So does her chief rival, Sarit Levine, Chief Inspector of the Jerusalem Police. Already biased against black Jews, Sarit suspects that the murder is a gang hit, payback for a failed drug deal. Maya suspects something far more sinister.

Spiced with Ethiopian folklore and superstition, including Evil Eye curses, spirit possession, witch’s brews and spells, The Hyena Murders explores the timely theme of racism: among the various tribes of Israeli Jews, among politicians and bureaucrats, and within Maya’s own family. In the course of the novel, as she grows closer to Dani, these social tensions take on an increasingly personal meaning for Maya.

About the Author

Dr. Ellen Frankel served for eighteen years as Editor in Chief and CEO of The Jewish Publication Society. She received her BA from the University of Michigan and her PhD in Comparative Literature from Princeton University.

She is the author of fourteen books, among them The Classic Tales; The Encyclopedia of Jewish Symbols; and The Five Books of Miriam. Her JPS Illustrated Children’s Bible won a National Jewish Book Award. In 2023, she won the Jewish Book Council’s Mentorship Award.

She has written librettos for chamber pieces with various composers, including two operas: Slaying the Dragon with Michael Ching, and The Triangle Fire with Leonard Lehrman.

Frankel is currently working on The Jerusalem Mystery Series featuring Israeli intelligence agent Maya Rimon. The Deadly Scrolls and The Hyena Murders were published in 2022.

Frankel lives in Sarasota and Maine with her husband, Herb Levine.
Product Details
ISBN: 9781637589359
ISBN-10: 1637589352
Publisher: Wicked Son
Publication Date: June 20th, 2023
Pages: 336
Language: English
Series: The Jerusalem Mysteries