Naomi Ragen is an American-born novelist, playwright and journalist who has lived in Jerusalem since 1971. Naomi has written for the Jerusalem Post and other publications in Israel and abroad, as well as to her mailing list, about Israel and Jewish issues.

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Naomi Ragen is an American-born novelist, playwright and journalist who has lived in Jerusalem since 1971. Naomi has written for the Jerusalem Post and other publications in Israel and abroad, as well as to her mailing list, about Israel and Jewish issues.



Naomi's tenth novel The Devil in Jerusalem has been chosen by the Jewish Telegraphic Agency as the number one Jewish book of the season.
The story - inspired by true events - begins with an ambulance screaming through Jerusalem’s quiet streets. Inside, a toddler fights for his life, his parents nowhere to be found. With profound shock, an emergency room doctor realizes that the child’s mother, a young American, is already at the hospital sitting at the bedside of yet another child with traumatic injuries, devoutly reciting Psalms and stubbornly refusing to answer any questions. “שטן
The Devil in Jerusalem is a chilling tale of the paths that so easily lead us astray, and the darkness within us all. Click the book’s cover to learn more.


Join Naomi in New York at the Skirball Center's Meet the Author Evening on April 25, 2017 at 6:30PM.





Naomi has published ten internationally best-selling novels, and is the author of a hit play (Women's Minyan) that has been performed more than 500 times in Israel's National Theatre (Habimah) as well as in the United States and Argentina.
An Orthodox woman, feminist and iconoclast, Naomi is a tireless advocate for women's rights in Israel, waging a relentless campaign against domestic abuse and bias in rabbinical courts, as well as a successful Supreme Court case against gender segregation on Israeli buses.
With her tenth novel, The Devil in Jerusalem, Naomi continues her ground-breaking exploration of women in the ultra-Orthodox Jewish world she began in 1989 with Jephte's Daughter, followed by Sotah and The Sacrifice of Tamar.
Naomi is a sought-after lecturer all over the world. If your group is interested in hosting Naomi, please click here.


October 2016 - The Devil in Jerusalem is published in paperback.
November 2015 - The Jewish Telegraphic Agency puts The Devil in Jerusalem at the top of its list of the best Jewish books of the season.
November 2015 - Naomi lectured in Newton (MA), Boca Raton (FL), Miami (FL), St. Louis (MO), New York City, Atlanta (GA), Cherry Hill (NJ) and Santa Fe (NM).
“שטןAugust 2015 - Naomi’s new book, שטן בירושלים, a translation of The Devil in Jerusalem, is published.
Le Dixieme Chant8-19 March 2015 - Naomi toured France and Switzerland, speaking to her readers in Paris, Marseilles, Strasbourg and Geneva about her new French book, Le Dixieme Chant, a translation of The Tenth Song.
12-20 November 2014 - Naomi lectured at the Windsor Writer’s Conference in Windsor, ON as well as in Detroit, Toronto and Winnipeg.
The Sisters Weiss7 October 2014 - Naomi's ninth novel, The Sisters Weiss, was published in paperback. It's the story of two sisters from an ultra-Orthodox family in 1950s Brooklyn who take very different paths, and then find their lives unexpectedly intersecting again forty years later. To order the book from Amazon, click the book cover above.

8-17 August 2014 - Naomi was the scholar-in-residence on Kosherica's Kosher Baltic Cruise aboard the Norwegian Cruise Lines Star. The 9 night cruise visited Copenhagen, Rostock, Tallinn, Helsinki, St. Petersburg and Stockholm.

Salone Internazionale del Libro 8-9 May 2014 - Naomi took part in a panel discussion on women in Israel, together with Fiamma Nirenstein and Elena Loewenthal, at the Salone Internazionale del Libro 2014 in Turin, Italy.

December 2013 - Watch an interview (in French) with Naomi about her struggle against the haredi war on women in Israel.
Watch an interview (in French) with Naomi about Le Serment.


December 2013 - Naomi visited Île-de-France to promote her new book Le serment (the French translation of The Covenant).


Sotah 15 March 2012 - Sotah was published in Italian as L'amora proibito. Read a review (in Italian).

Jephte's Daughter March 2012 - Jephte's Daughter was published in an Italian paperback edition, as Una moglie a Gerusalemme.

Le Fantôme de Dona Gracia Mendes October 2011 - The Ghost of Hannah Mendes was published in French as Le Fantôme de Dona Gracia Mendes. Read a review (in French).

The Tenth Song October 2011 - The Tenth Song was published in paperback.

May 2011 - Four-time Tony nominee Tovah Feldshuh directed a staged reading of Women's Minyan at New York's Westside Theater. The reading was produced by One Circle Productions, in partnership with Safe Horizon.

Watch the reading. Watch an interview with Naomi and Tovah Feldshuh.

Le serment November 2013 - The Covenant was published in French as Le serment.

November 2013 - Watch an interview with Naomi by Sharon Mor of Shaulina Productions about Naomi's new book The Sisters Weiss in Hebrew or in English.

6 November 2013 - Israel's Supreme Court reversed the District Court's decision against Naomi in the Shapiro case and ordered Shapiro to return the money she was awarded. Naomi agreed that the money be donated to charity.
October-November 2013 - Naomi toured the US, visiting twelve US cities and speaking about her new book, The Sisters Weiss.
The Sisters Weiss October 2013 - Naomi's ninth novel, The Sisters Weiss, was published. Read an article about it in the San Diego Jewish World.
Chains Around the Grass August 2013 - Chains Around the Grass was published in an Amazon Kindle edition.
July 2013 - An interview with Naomi about her trips to Spain to research her best-selling The Ghost of Hannah Mendes was featured in Jewish Travel.
December 2012 - Naomi's play Women's Minyan was performed by the West Boca Theatre Company at the Levis JCC in Boca Raton, Florida.
November 2012 - Naomi visited Île-de-France speaking about her books.
5 November 2012 - Naomi spoke at the Cockfosters and North Southgate Synagogue in London, England.

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Recent Comments

Martyrs for Sex and Paradise

Time after time, the families of suicide bombers are interviewed by weepy reporters from CNN and BBC to explain the noble motivation of the boys who strap on explosives and behead little babies, pregnant women, and innocents of all kinds. One thing that the reporters miss, though, is that its not nationalistic fervor, or outrage at their “persecution” that is motivating his boys, as much as the Muslim religious teaching that promises each of them unlimited free sex with virgins in paradise as a reward for spilling innocent blood.

Bob Simon of Sixty Minutes interviewed Mohammed Abu Wardeh, whose Arabic remarks were translated: “God would compensate the martyr for sacrificing his life for his land. If you become a martyr, God will give you 70 virgins, 70 wives and everlasting happiness.”

Now, Arab-Americans are claiming in outrage that this is a mistranslation. Maher Hathout, a Muslim “scholar” with the Islamic Center of Southern California wrote in the Atlanta-Constitution: “There is nothing in the Koran or in Islamic teachings about 70 virgins or sex in paradise. This is ridiculous, and any true Muslim knows that.”

Oh, really?

Sheikh Abdul Hadi Palazzi, head of the Cultural Institute of the Italian Islamic Community, and a true Islamic scholar, had this to say: “The only ridiculous thing is that someone who claims to be an ”Islamic scholar” makes public declarations which prove beyond any possible doubt that he has never read the Commentary of Ibn Kathir and “Sunan” of Imam at-Tirmidhi, which are basic books for the knowledge of Islam! Unfortunately, this attribution of chairs to ignoramuses seems to be the rule in American Islamic Centers controlled by the fundamentalist network of the Muslim Brotherhood.

“According to Islam there are seventy two wives for every believer who is admitted to Heaven, and not only for a martyr. The proof is a hadith which is collected by Imam at-Tirmidhi in “Sunan” (Volume IV, Chapters on “The Features of Heaven as described by the Messenger of Allah”, Chapter 21: “About the Smallest Reward for the People of Heaven”, hadith 2687) and also quoted by Ibn Kathir in his Tafsir (Koranic Commentary) of Surah Rhman (55), ayah (verse) 72:

“It was mentioned by Daraj Ibn Abi Hatim, that Abu al-Haytham ‘Adullah Ibn Wahb narrated from Abu Sa’id al-Khudhri, who heard the Prophet Muhammad (Allah’s blessings and peace be upon him) saying, ‘The smallest reward for the people of Heaven is an abode where there are eighty thousand servants and seventy two wives, over which stands a dome decorated with pearls, aquamarine and ruby, as wide as the distance from al-Jabiyyah to San’a.”

Ibn Kathir explains in “al-Bidayah wa an-Nihayah” that al-Jabiyyah is the name of a suburb of Damascus.

That those seventy two wives are virgin is proved by the ayah 74 of the same Surah:” No man or jinn has ever touched them before”.

In conclusion, whether or not the remarks on Sixty Minutes are a mistranslation isn’t the point. The point is this:Horny Arab teenagers are being convinced the way to sex in the puritanical Arab world (where fathers routinely murder daughters who are even suspected of losing their virginity) is through hate-filled mass murders. Too bad you missed that, CNN, BBC. Takes away from the “nobility” of the “sacrifice,” huh?

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