One Bay One Book - The Betrayers by David Bezmozgis


 The Betrayers by David Bezmozgis

Jewish LearningWorks' 3rd Annual

A project of the Jewish Community Library  


One Bay One Book is:
A yearlong conversation reaching Bay Area adults through opportunities for lively Jewish learning. Stimulated by a selected book and its themes, the program connecting readers through discussions, events, and informal conversations.

The Betrayers by David Bezmozgis:
The Betrayers spans one momentous day in the life of powerful Israeli politician Baruch Kotler, a former Soviet refusenik. Fleeing to the Crimea in the wake of political pressure and blackmail, he unexpectedly comes face to face with the man who denounced him to the KGB forty years earlier.  In prose that is elegant, sly, precise, and devastating in its awareness of the human heart, David Bezmozgis has created a powerful morality tale for modern times that poses profound questions about ethics and forgiveness. Evoking biblical themes while casting attention to the plight of Jews in both Israel and Ukraine, it is both a timely and timeless book that will provoke lively discussion.

"Now that Philip Roth has finished his life's work, let us turn our attention to David Bezmozgis. His bravery and style are off the charts and The Betrayers is his finest, slyest, most robust work yet." —Gary Shteyngart

David Bezmozgis is an award-winning writer and filmmaker. His first book, Natasha and Other Stories, has been translated into fifteen languages since its publication in 2004. His first novel, The Free World, was published in 2011. In 2010, he was included inThe New Yorker's 20 Under 40 issue, celebrating the twenty most promising fiction writers under the age of forty. Born in Riga, Latvia, he lives in Toronto.

For One Bay One Book resources about The Betrayers, including a reading guide, interviews, and an essay by Rabbi Aubrey Glazer, please visit our Resources page.

Programs, book discussions, and community events are being hosted by the Jewish Community Library and our One Bay One Book partners throughout the Bay Area.  For upcoming One Bay One Book events, click here.

If you are part of a book group, consider making The Betrayers one of your books for discussion. A limited number of book sets will be made available free of charge through the Jewish Community Library’s Book Club in a Box lending program.

Join the conversation!

Last year, more than a thousand people in seven Bay Area counties participated in One Bay One Book events!  

Be a Partner: 
If you are part of an organization or institution, we hope that you will join us as we embark on the third year of this celebrated program. Becoming a partner with One Bay One Book allows your organization and its constituents to enjoy dynamic learning experiences and connect with the larger Jewish community.  Please contact Allison Green at or 415.567.3327 ext. 703 to learn more about the program and becoming a partner.


2014-2015 COMMUNITY PARTNERS (to date):
Afikomen Judaica, Berkeley
Brandeis-Hillel Jewish Day School, San Francisco
Coastside Jewish Community & Coastside Jewish Community, East Bay Chapter
Congregation Beth Ami, The Celia Gurevitch Library, Santa Rosa
Congregation Beth Israel Judea, San Francisco
Congregation Beth Jacob, Sisterhood Book Group, Redwood City
Congregation Beth Sholom, San Francisco
Congregation Beth Sholom Religious School Parents' Book Group, San Francisco
Congregation B'nai Emunah, San Francisco
Congregation Etz Chayim, Palo Alto
Congregation Kol Emeth, Palo Alto
Congregation Ner Shalom, Cotati
Congregation Ner Tamid, San Francisco
Congregation Netivot Shalom, Berkeley
Congregation Shir Hadash, Los Gatos
Congregation Shomrei Torah, Santa Rosa
Contemporary Jewish Museum Book Group, San Francisco
Friends of the Jewish Community Library, San Francisco
Hadassah, San Francisco Chapter

Hadassah, Sequoia Chapter
JCC of San Francisco
Jewish Community High School of the Bay, San Francisco
The Jewish American Fiction Book Club, Fairfax 
Jewish Community Library, San Francisco
J. the Jewish news weekly of Northern California

Kehillah Community Synagogue, Oakland
Lehrhaus Judaica. Berkeley
Or Shalom Jewish Community, San Francisco

Osher Marin JCC, San Rafael
Oshman Family JCC, Palo Alto
Peninsula Temple Beth El, San Mateo
Peninsula Temple Sholom, Burlingame
Peninsula Sinai Congregation Men's Club, Foster City
Temple Isaiah, Lafayette

The Betrayers is now available at your local bookstore including:
Books Inc with locations throughout the Bay Area
Book Passage in Corte Madera and the Ferry Building in San Francisco
Afikomen Judaica in Berkeley
Bookshop West Portal in West Portal

The Jewish Community Library is located at 1835 Ellis Street; between Scott and Pierce on the campus of the Jewish Community High School. There is free garage parking at the entrance on Pierce Street between Ellis and Eddy. For more information visit the website: