Rifki Nesher is a fifteen-year old girl living in London with her parents David and Sara Nesher. The family lives a modest but contented life centered around Rifki, their only child. Her parents would like to see Rifki married as soon as she finishes seminary and settled into an ordinary domestic life, providing them with the nachas of many grandchildren. But Rifki has dreams and aspirations of her own. She yearns to combine homemaking and motherhood with the fulfillment of her personal ambitions in the medical field for which she has a strong inclination. How this can be accomplished is a sensitive issue in the Nesher household, but before it can be resolved, Rifki's life is thrown into intense turmoil when her father loses his job as a schoolteacher. With her father unable to find a new job, Rifki's mother returns to her old job as secretary for a legal firm, but her earnings are simply not sufficient to support the family. The family's fortunes steadily decline. The situation becomes so desperate that Rifki is forced to leave school and seek employment so that the family home is not lost, and it seems that all her hopes of developing her skills in the medical field are dashed. Or are they? Just when everything looks bleakest, Rifki finds a job as an assistant in a pathology laboratory and is euphoric that she will be able to fulfill her dream after all. Or will she? As the story advances through many unexpected turns, including a harrowing terrorist attack on a settlement in Eretz Yisrael and the discovery that David Nesher is suffering from a grave illness, the family is constantly presented with difficult dilemmas and only through care and understanding for each other are they able to come to grips with the great crises in their lives. "Working it Out" is the first of a trilogy by Ruthie Pearlman of London, England. The next two books in the trilogy, "Getting It Right" and "Making It Last", which follow Rifki's progress through the next stages in her life, are already in advanced stages of preparation.
by Ruthie Pearlman
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