The protagonist, an Israeli secret service agent, agrees to go undercover to redeem himself after one prisoner dies in his custody and another spits in his face, earning a tooth-breaking punch in the mouth.
In his new mission, he insinuates himself into the company of an Israeli writer who has befriended a dying Palestinian named Hani whose son has become a terrorist bomber. He grows fond of the courtly, peaceable Hani (though not entirely enamored of his literary efforts), and the novel's suspense and moral dilemma spring from their friendship.
(One interesting discussion of the book contrasts the protagonist's own estrangement from his young family with Hani's yearning to see his son, suggesting that "the Palestinians are destined to overcome simply because theirs is a culture which recognizes and nurtures fatherhood." Perhaps, though the review neglects to mention that Hani has not seen his son for years, and that the son is willing to blow himself up, which may mean eternal life, but without father.)
Perhaps more controversial is a sarcastic off-hand observation about Israeli troops with low IQs being assigned the unpleasant task of guarding prisoners. Such observations are not generally uttered about the military in the United States, and an outsider like your humble blogkeeper can only wonder about their effect in a country where the military has traditionally been revered.