'Imam al-Ghazali: A Concise Life'

Wided Khadraoui

Imam al-Ghazali: A Concise Life
By Edoardo Albert
Kube Publishing Ltd, 2013

“Imam al-Ghazali: A Concise Life” by Edoardo Albert delivers a succinct biography of one of Islam’s influential figures. The book has a straightforward style accompanied by illustrations, context boxes, and a glossary to help convey the exceptional journey undertaken by al-Ghazali.

The Artist in Syria

By Etel Adnan

Dissident Syria
By miriam cooke
Duke University Press, 2007

I just read Miriam Cooke’s “Dissident Syria” and feel that this work has to be brought to the attention of specialists of Arab and Middle Eastern studies, students of literature and the general public.


Dreaming at the Crossroads of Cultures: Mirages

Angele Ellis
Issa Makhlouf’s “Mirages” (The Post-Apollo Press, 2015), formerly translated from the Arabic into French in 2004, returns in an English edition translated by Alicia F. Lam. As a Lebanese writer and poet living in Paris, Makhlouf has written 11 books, of which many have been translated into other languages. In “Mirages,” he presents a collection of eye-catching poems that, as the book’s title suggests, are written with the mysticism of a mirage.

Love and Loss: An Iran-Iraq Story

Bobby Gulshan
For those unaccustomed to witnessing the daily, random bombardments of cities during a bloody conflict like the eight-year Iran-Iraq War, it would be hard to imagine the lives of those who actually endured those experiences. The novel “A Portal in Space” (Center for Middle Eastern Studies, University of Texas at Austin, 2015), by Mahmoud Saeed, allows readers to feel, share, and interact with the ordinary people living in war-plagued Basra, Iraq. You cannot help but feel connected to the characters as they struggle to cope with their worries, fears, and despair.

Broken Dreams: Love, Corruption, and the Plight of Foreign Workers in Israel

By Lynne Rogers
Murder Under the Bridge, a Palestine Mystery
By Kate Jessica Raphael
She Writes Press, 2015
Kate Jessica Raphael describes her novel, “Murder Under the Bridge, a Palestine Mystery,” as “the product of my imagination and experience – the experience and imagination of a white, Jewish American who spent around eighteen months in Palestine, with brief forays into Israel.” Her cast of characters also crosses the green line in the pursuit of love, which results in grave consequences. The mystery opens with the discovery of

Dying to Reach Europe: The African Immigrant Crisis

By Aisha K. Nasser
African Titanics
By Abu Bakr Khaal
Translated by Charis Bredin
Darf Publishers Ltd, 2014.
(First published in Arabic by Dar al Saqi, London, 2008.)
Media accounts normalize the tally of illegal African immigrants drowning while crossing the Mediterranean. Eritrean novelist Abu Bakr Khaal disrupts this false sense of normality by giving voices to these immigrants.


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