For Father’s Day: 5 Gift Books on Father-child Relationships

In case you’re celebrating:

imagesThe Corsair, Abdulaziz al-Mahmoud (trans. Amira Nowaira). Fathers who like fast-paced historical novels with pirates, but with focus on father-son relationshpis (and a sympathy for Gulf pirates) will enjoy this.

Stealth, Sonallah Ibrahim (trans. Hosam Aboul-ela). This is the great Egyptian father-son book: A historical novel in Ibrahim’s terse style, and yet ultimately a tender look at childhood.

The First Well: A Bethlehem Boyhood, Jabra Ibrahim Jabra (trans. Issa Boullata). This is also a straightforward but ultimately tender look at childhood; Jabra’s book offeres pictures of a boyhood in Bethlehem and Jerusalem of the 1920s.

I Saw Ramallah and I Was Born There, I Was Born Here, both by Mourid Bargouti (the former trans. Ahdaf Soueif, the latter Humphrey Davies) are memoirs not primarily about Barghouti’s relationship with his son, Tamim, but this relationship is laced throughout.

The Girl Who Fell to Earth, Sophia al-Maria. This is al-Maria’s memoir of growing up between the US and Qatar, and has a beautiful, sensitive portrait of her father and her sometimes-difficult relationship with him.