I decided to take a break from my busy life and have a relaxing day @ Border’s bookshop and buy Banat Al-Riyadh which was just released in English this week. So I took my newly purchased book and headed to spend several hours alone in Starbucks with a Venti Java Chip Coffee Frappicino & New York Steak & Cheese Panini *drool*
Sometimes I love just sitting alone on a comfy sofa reading a book, it’s been a long time since I’ve had the chance to do it so it was quite refreshing. Before starting to read the book, I scanned the whole place and never everyone was alone; old men reading newspapers, young guys on their laptops, some 5aleeji guys studying and others with their noses deep in books.
So… I’ve read Chapter 1 and nearly finished Chapter 2 and I love the book already. It reminds me of girls I actually know, in the way they talk and their actions, I laughed when I read that one of the Characters Michelle (or Masha’ael in the Arabic Version) studied Computer Science…. since that’s basically me :rofl:
One thing that is annoying me though is all the footnotes at the bottom of the page, basically translating things like what mashalla, yalla, e walla mean…. I guess it’s for the Western Population which have no clue what they mean… but when you know what they mean it gets pretty annoying after a while
You have to commend Rajaa on writing such a book and I really hope she released more books soon
Here is a quick synopsis of the book if you don’t already know (which is highly unlikely!)
An unknown girl in her early twenties decides to narrate the story of her friends. She is like a modern Scheherazade that narrates these stories every weekend. Her motivation is to revenge the tyranny of life and the society against her friends. Each chapter in the novel starts with a piece of poetry, a verse from the Quran, or lyrics from a famous song that captured the idea of the chapter.
The narrator sends e-mails from her internet group to the subscribers. Those e-mails as the narrator forecasts in the novel stir the media especially popular newspapers in Saudi like Al-Riyadh, Al-Watan and Al-Jazeerah which happened in real life after the novel was published. This kind of forecasting added reality and intrigue to the novel. In one segment, the narrator says that she will probably be interviewed on Al-Arabiya TV by one of the most important interviewers in the Arab World: Turki Al-Dakheel which also took place.
The novel speaks of 4 Saudi girls who are studying at the university in Riyadh: Sadeem, Gamrah, Lamees and Masha’ael. The four girls were bound by a strong friendship despite their differences.
Source: Rajaa Al-Sanea
You can buy the English Version of the Book from Amazon, you really should