With Chanukah coming up, and many of you wondering what to get for the curious Jew in your life, there are two new books that you may want to consider (for yourselves as well).
The first is of the 'cofee table' variety, and is called 'Sticking to Israel' by Elan Katz Mosbacher. It consists of 80 pages of photos of different Israeli bumper stickers and graffitti (with translation captions). It succeeds in capturing the tone and variety of Israeli religious, political, and social life as expressed through sloganeering, and perusing this book is both enjoyable and stimulating.
The second book I haven't yet gotten the chance to read, but I saw it for sale and was very intrigued. It's called Off the Derech by Faranak Margolese, and analyzes the phenomenon of people raised as Orthodox Jews who stop adhering to its regulations. I hope to get a chance to read it soon, but if you have comments on it, feel free to post. The topic is certainly an interesting one. The book wasn't written from an academic or scientific perspective, rather from that of an insider trying to understand a lamentable situation.