The Way Back (Hardcover)

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Staff Reviews

The Way Back is an adventure that really makes you feel like everyone's life is worth something. The book chronicles a journey home and a deal with death. Once you have read the book and understand the context, you are filled with hope that, no matter the odds, there is a way back home. I enjoyed the book. It is, on the surface level, a romp through Jewish folk stories, but harbors multiple deeper meanings. This book could, in my opinion, mean something different to everyone—a trait for which I give it high praise.

— Colin B.


Perfect for readers of Neil Gaiman and Philip Pullman, a sweeping historical fantasy that follows two teens on a journey through the Far Country, a Jewish land of spirits and demons.

For the Jews of Eastern Europe, demons are everywhere: dancing on the rooftops in the darkness of midnight, congregating in the trees, harrowing the dead, even reaching out to try and steal away the living.

But the demons have a land of their own: a Far Country peopled with the souls of the transient dead, governed by demonic dukes, barons, and earls. When the Angel of Death comes strolling through the little shtetl of Tupik one night, two young people will be sent spinning off on a journey through the Far Country. There they will make pacts with ancient demons, declare war on Death himself, and maybe-- just maybe--find a way to make it back alive.

Drawing inspiration from the Jewish folk tradition, The Way Back is a dark adventure sure to captivate readers of Neil Gaiman's The Graveyard Book and Philip Pullman's The Book of Dust.

About the Author

Gavriel Savit holds a BFA in musical theater from the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, where he grew up. As an actor and singer, Gavriel has performed on three continents, from New York to Brussels to Tokyo. He is also the author of Anna and the Swallow Man, which the New York Times called "a splendid debut." Learn more about Gavriel on the Web at

Praise For…

Lyrical and fantastic…. Steeped in the rich traditions of ghost stories and Jewish folklore, this remarkable feat of storytelling is sure to delight.” —Kirkus Reviews, starred review

A bewitching allegorical adventure comprised of small, beautifully composed moments.” —Publishers Weekly, starred review

Savit builds the action with a storyteller’s assured cadences, creating a story rich in elements of Jewish folk tradition and flashes of both humor and the grotesque.” —The Bulletin, starred review

Product Details
ISBN: 9781984894625
ISBN-10: 1984894625
Publisher: Knopf Books for Young Readers
Publication Date: November 17th, 2020
Pages: 368