I just finished a book that I really can recommend
"My Glorious Brothers"
by Howard Fast, the author of "Spartacus." The book was written in, I believe, 1948 but the story-telling is as real as one can imagine. It defines the Jewish Soul as few books I have ever read. Reading this book explains the rise of Israel as a modern country. Amazon has it for under $10.00. I have the name linked to the Amazon website that sells the book.
The book tells the story of the Maccabee revolt that freed Israel from the Greek Army - the superpower of the day before the rise of Rome. And no, no one stands up and yells "I am Maccabee". OK, Joshua? lol
It's a one sitting - long night, can't put it down reader. I make no money off of the sales of this book.
Dave - you can borrow my copy.