Habib Abdulrab Sarori – ‘The Daughter of Suslov’

From the International Prize for Arabic Fiction official biography and book description:

Habib Abdulrab Sarori is a Yemeni novelist, born in 1956. He has been Professor of Computer Science at the National Institute of Applied Sciences in Rouen, France, since 1992. He has published literary works in both Arabic and French. His first novel La Reine Étripée was published in French in 2000. He has published four novels in Arabic, a collection of short stories and a book of poetry. An extract from his novel, The Bird of Destruction (2005), appeared in English translation in Banipal magazine, in an issue devoted to contemporary Yemeni writing.

The Daughter of Suslov takes place in the seaport city of Aden, Yemen, spanning from the 1960s until the 21stcentury. As a young man, the narrator finds himself attracted to the daughter of a high-ranking official in the ruling Marxist party. Years later, he meets her again – only to find that she is now a niqab-wearing Salafist, calling on people to join the Islamist Salafi movement. The novel explores contemporary Yemeni reality against the backdrop of Aden’s history, from the independence of southern Yemen and the subsequent establishment of The People’s Democratic Republic of Yemen, to the Unification of Yemen in 1990 and the Arab Spring.

 

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