“The bitter edge of the blustery cold softened as the fog dropped over the land, thick as a felt saddle blanket. The mountain paths and ravines were no longer distinguishable, making it impossible to guess how much distance remained ahead. Features of the landscape known popularly as the Frenchmen’s Chamber, Deaf-mute’s Crevice, St Severin’s Elbow, the Cross of the Sacred Heart, had all vanished.”
“I remember Emile Habibi, the great Palestinian novelist, once said to me, How dare you give the characters of your novels Christian or Muslim names?”
They came away until they came
to water, wearied
while overhead the sun searched for a needle
to reattach them to the shadows.
The book, which deserves much more attention than it’s gotten thus far, is up against stiff competition.
“The subject? Beirut, Antoine Kerbage, Mohammad el Maghout, theatre, the 70’s, an unpublished manuscript, the arabs, the golden age of Lebanese artistic scene, all mixed with some autobiography (because otherwise it wont be fun).”
Lebanese novelist Jana Elhassan found both her second and third novels on the shortlist for the International Prize for Arabic Fiction (IPAF). Her third, The Ninety-ninth Floor, was translated to English by Michelle Hartman and published by Interlink last month: Also last… Read More ›
“On the PEN poetry longlist, also announced yesterday, a collection of work by Moroccan writer Abdellatif Laâbi also made that ten-book list. “
“Limbo Beirut″ is a demand that the reader ″balance in the uneasy space between being a voyeur and a participant, gratifying our desire to get inside the head of that stranger we meet on the street…but on the other hand surprising us with the fact that you can never just be a witness, that you′re always going to somehow become involved in the other′s life, whether you mean to or not.″
“I cannot really imagine how such academic book can be that dangerous because of examining the erotic experience in the modern Arabic poetry?”
Among the authors on Jraissati’s fall list, only Dima Wannous doesn’t have a book in English translation.
“Seven of the writers read in English and one in Arabic: Mishka Mourani, Jehan Bseiso, Reem Rashash Shaaban, Marina Chamma, Kathy Shalhoub, Doyle Avant, Mohamad Shami, and Rewa Zeinati.”
“You’re welcome, oppressed women everywhere.”