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Sex, money, and politics are the driving forces of society in this new novel from bestselling author Alaa Al Aswany. A medley of Egyptian and ... Show synopsis

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Reviews of Chicago

Overall customer rating: 3.000

Strong insights, riveting plot, weak ending

by Callaway on Jan 15, 2009

As in The Yakobian Building, Alaa Al-Aswany stands out among Egyptian writers as a firm critic of social hypocrisy who is adept at intertwining several urban lives together to create a riveting plot. However, also as in his prior novel, he has a weakness for the tinny fanfare of an all-out life-or-death Hollywood ending, leaving his characters in the muck, relationships broken, young people in torture chambers, suicides, tears, etc, out of which one couple emerges (I won't say which) to give us hope. I liked it in The Yakobian Building, but this time around I saw all its artifice and kitsch. I couldn't put down the book I was liking it so much, but the resolution really felt forced and left a sour taste in my mouth.

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