A well-constructed, highly informative historical novel.”


Based on actual events

How could a medieval Jewish cemetery in Vitoria, Spain be the cause of so much debate?

At Vitoria transports the reader to the Iberian Peninsula at the end of the fifteenth century and weaves a story of success, downfall, love, terror, tragedy, shame, and honor. The historical and cultural details surrounding the story make for an evocative narrative that draws the reader in and provides an engaging sense of realism.

At Vitoria introduces the reader to a Jewish family living in medieval Vitoria:

  • The master cobbler BENJAMIN CREVAGO who creates footwear treasures worn by Iberian nobles. He is Jewish to his core, but is also a tortured soul that carries a dreadful secret.
  • His brother VIDAL, who delivers Benjamin’s creations to Christian agents throughout the Iberian Peninsula, but is traumatized when he witnesses the horrors of the Inquisition.
  • Brother physician ROFFE MICHAH helps the Christian community after a great illness strikes and the Christian doctors flee to the countryside. However, the gift of saving Christian children comes at a great price.
  • The youngest and most pampered brother YOSEF, who becomes a professor of languages at the University of Murcia and is elevated to the position of court adviser to the provincial Governor.

At Vitoria tells how the Crevagos cope with the realities of Inquisition Spain and with the edict of expulsion issued by KING FERDINAND and QUEEN ISABELLA. It is also the story of how the medieval Christians of Vitoria take an oath to preserve the Jewish cemetery and keep this promise for almost 500 years. In 1952, the descendants of the Jews of Vitoria must vote to either release Vitoria’s Town Council from the oath or require the Christians of Vitoria to uphold it.

At Vitoria is a heart wrenching, but ultimately heart-warming read, with a life-affirming message. It is sure to cause smiles, tears, and pride in humanity.


Goodreads: “Five stars. I couldn’t put this book down. With a glossary, bibliography and questions for reading groups this is a good book club choice. Brava!”

Readers’ Favorite: “The characters are well-sketched and the book is a riveting combination of history, drama, facts and fiction that will keep readers glued till the very end.”

Kirkus Reviews: “A well-constructed, highly informative historical novel.”

The San Diego Jewish World: “…Selz brought a woman’s voice to this era of world history, reflecting as she did upon the limited choices women faced in an era when they were neither permitted education nor given choices in whom they might marry….Selz’s depiction of the home lives of the extended Crevago family are so evocative, at times I felt I was sitting down with the family at the main meal.”


Rahav and Baruh sighted Vidal, Juhuda and the boys and walked up the sloping street. They greeted their brothers and nephews with the usual kisses on both cheeks—the same as what others were doing as more and more men joined the group. Avram pushed his cart of cloths through the crowd so he could stand with his family. Roffe Michah walked over too. They stood together, waiting nervously with others in the community. A low hum buzzed as more people arrived.

Vidal said, “For generations, the synagogue has been central to our lives. Now, for the first time, a messenger of such importance is in front of the synagogue. This cannot be good”

The rabbi emerged from inside the synagogue. He was not smiling or showing any signs of joy that the monarchs’ emissary was visiting his synagogue. He had not changed to special clothes, suggesting that this was a surprise visit. He wore his basic brown tunic and a knitted kippa with its frayed brown edges and off-white Star of David in the center.

Collectively, the men standing in front of the synagogue gave a slight bow to the rabbi in reverence to his position. Daniyyel whispered to Vidal, “The rabbi looks blank, which is so unlike him. Usually he wears one of his two faces: happy for celebrations or sad for funerals and mourning days. What do you think?”

Vidal looked at his nephew but said nothing as the rabbi began to speak.

“This man is from our monarchs. He has an important message for us. Let us listen with the respect due our king and queen.”

A silence came over the crowd. The messenger cleared his throat. In a loud and emphatic voice, he read from a scroll entitled “Jewish Charter of Expulsion.”

Additional Information About At Vitoria

  • Format: hardcover, paperback and ebook (Kindle)
  • Release date: March 23, 2018 (print); June 1, 2018 (Kindle)
  • ISBN 978-1-4808-5297-6 (paperback)
  • ISBN 978-1-4808-5298-3 (hardcover)
  • ISBN 978-1-4808-5296-9 (ebook)
  • Page count: 242
  • Price: $17.99 (U.S., paperback); $35.95 (U.S., hardcover); $3.99 (U.S., Kindle)
  • Reviews and press
  • Information for book clubs

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