Visiting Israel was never a bucket list item for Gerroa author David Kerr.
Thankfully he joined his wife Christine and visited Israel in 2013. For it was during that trip that Kerr would meet a man who would change his life forever and give him the idea for his first novel.
Some eight years later, as the world reels from the latest manifestation of the tragic and often bloody Israel-Palestine conflict, Kerr is preparing to launch his novel set amidst the simmering tensions of the Middle East.
Wall of Tears: The Human Face of the Israel-Palestine Conflict is Kerr’s first novel, but second book.
The book’s central characters are members of an Israeli and a Palestinian family, and the story Kerr has woven around his characters is based on events that actually happened.
In 2013 Kerr stood at the Western Wall in the Old City of Jerusalem – or as it’s often referred to in the West, The Wailing Wall. Beside him was a Jewish friend that Kerr and his wife Christine had met earlier on their visit to Israel.
Their friend told them that he had stood there as a young boy beside his father, an Auschwitz survivor, on their first visit to one of Judaism’s most sacred sites.
“My friend said he knew his father wanted to go closer but couldn’t make the final 10 metres to the Wall,” Kerr said. “He watched his father shake with emotion and a single tear trickled down his face. He’d never seen his father cry and was very concerned.