Matti Friedman, a journalist, is the author of two previous works of nonfiction.
His 2016 book Pumpkinflowers: A Soldier’s Story of a Forgotten War was chosen as a New York Times’ Notable Book and as one of Amazon’s 10 best books of the year. Pumpkinflowers was selected as one of the year’s best by Booklist, Mother Jones, Foreign Affairs, the National Post, and the Globe and Mail. It won the 2017 Vine Award for Canadian Jewish literature and the Canadian Jewish Literary Award for memoir, and was shortlisted for the 2017 RBC Taylor Prize, the Writer’s Trust Prize, and the Yitzhak Sadeh Prize for military writing (Israel). Editions were published in the US, Britain, Canada, Israel, and China.
Matti’s first book, The Aleppo Codex, an investigation into the strange fate of an ancient Bible manuscript, won the 2014 Sami Rohr Prize, the ALA’s Sophie Brody Medal, and the Canadian Jewish Book Award for history. It was translated into seven languages.
Spies of No Country, the story of Israel’s first intelligence agents in 1948, has received the 2018 Natan Book Award.
A former Associated Press correspondent, Matti’s work as a reporter has taken him from Israel to Lebanon, Morocco, Moscow, the Caucasus, and Washington, DC. He has been a regular essayist for the New York Times opinion section, and his writing has appeared in the Wall Street Journal, the Washington Post, Tablet Magazine, and elsewhere. Two essays about media coverage of Israel after the 2014 Gaza war, for Tablet and The Atlantic, triggered intense discussion and have been shared on Facebook more than 130,000 times.
He was born in Toronto and lives in Jerusalem with his family.