The Women of the Berlin Salon: A Historical Novel

“Life must be experienced at full intensity, at its full weight it should pass through you, collide with you in all its might and leave its mark on you. That is the difference between being dead and being alive.”

By the end of the 18th century, German high society is on the precipice of enlightenment. Rachel Levin, the restless daughter in a successful family of merchants, forms a strong and lasting connection with Henrietta and Dorothea – each of them a member of known and well-respected Jewish families. Yet the three of them are far from respected, or free. In a society where a woman’s value is measured by the man in front of her, the three independent-thinking women set out to make their own paths in life – as Berlin’s most popular Salonnières.

United by their passion on the backdrop of rising German nationalism, where being born Jewish, not to mention a woman, is far from advantageous – Rachel, Henrietta, and Dorothea each face challenges of the mind, soul, and heart. Finding their place in history will not only put them at risk. They will soon find their dreams can cost them far more than their status.

״I liked how inspiring this book was. The bravery of the three friends to challenge the retrogressive aspects of the culture they were born into was something to admire. I liked their resilience and how they fought to rise beyond the shackles of religious bondage, political upheaval, religious hypocrisy, and chauvinistic oppression. The unbreakable bond between them was also something to admire. As a woman, I found a connection with the trio and enjoyed their journey towards self-advancement, spiritual awakening, and economic stability, despite the odds that were against them and originating from different directions. Moreover, I liked the structure of the book. This book begins with a prologue and is divided into three parts and various chapters. Each chapter is named after the year the events took place. This makes it easy to navigate, as readers can follow the timelines easily. This further enhanced my enjoyment of it.״

For a long time, I wanted to be an archaeologist, I was intrigued to know what was here before, how people lived, what they thought, what they did, what their lives looked like.


I didn't do it, I don't even know why…


But after I finished writing the historical novel " The Women of the Berlin Salon" I realized that after all I am a bit of an archaeologist – of old memories.


Before I wrote my historical novel, I did some research and in the process, I felt that I was being drawn in, into the story.


Just as an archaeologist digs deep, I also delved into the soul of my heroines, into their joys that were mixed with hardship, into the sadness that often befell them, into the repressed passions and all the experiences that happened in another time, in a stormy time full of upheavals, in a world that seems to have been different but looks like ours.


"The Women of the Berlin Salon"  is based on real characters – three brave women who followed their truth, when there was only one truth.


"The Women of the Berlin Salon"  is a story about relationships, about love and passion, about disappointments, On a desire for self-realization and prohibitions upon prohibitions, on the tension between religion and secularism, and about a world that changes but stands still.


And perhaps most of all it is about a search for identity.


I invite you to purchase the book Get carried away with the characters

Recommendation of Reuven (Ruby) Rivlin

former president of Israel

"I gratefully received your historical novel "The Women of the Berlin Salon". It's fascinating to discover what devious ways women have broken out for themselves throughout history with determination and courage in the name of the love of culture and spirit."


Recommendation of Yaffe Gabish, literature critic

The author manages to bring the period to life, intrigue, excite and allow the reader to feel as if he were there.
The author did a good job of adapting the language to the period, as well as through the slightly licentious and lofty language connecting to the atmosphere and grandeur of those times.
I read it with pleasure and curiosity and I highly recommend it.

Sonya Katlan

The reading club for book lovers

"The book was read slowly and with great pleasure, while wanting to preserve the pleasure of reading for a long time. While reading I found myself participating in conversations, each time in the living room of a different character. the conversations that took place faithfully reflect the period.

The pleasant, beautiful, eloquent and suggestive writing sweeps and connects the reader to the period. The book is the author's first novel but definitely feels mature. Lovers of reading and knowledge! I highly recommend reading the book.״

Hana Redo, CEO of Supersona

If you know Michel Zohar Ben-Dor, the author of "The Women of the Berlin Salon" ,tell her that the book fascinated me, I connected with the characters, and in part I fell in love. Read and read

Vered Iftah Green Evening culture,Radio kan B

I did not know how good the book I had taken with me on holiday was, but what can I tell you, it turned out perfect. The writing swept me in and even fascinated me

HAARETZ Israel news

“The Women of the Berlin Salon” spotlights Varnhagen and her close friendship with Brendel Mendelssohn – the oldest daughter of Moses Mendelssohn, who later changed her first name, married (twice) and became the well-know writer Dorothea Schlegel – and with linguist and literary scholar Henriette Herz, née de Lemos. Zohar Ben-Dor devotes many pages to the emergence of this marvelous phenomenon.

Reut Esther Pincus Literature critic

"Ben-Dor's writing is writing that breathes life, even though the story took place approximately 250 years ago, and his language is adapted to the time, the book flowed and was interesting and engrossing"

Kan Darom Newspaper

"A book ignites the imagination"