Art & CultureReviews

This week’s reading list

By: Malak Tera, ​17/4/2017

Eleanor and Park by Rainbow Rowell:

A book that leaves you overwhelmed with emotion, Eleanor and Park is about 2 characters, misfits who don’t belong to their society but find belonging and comfort within each other’s company. Throughout the novel, their relationship changes from awkwardness to genuine intimacy. It’s not the typical high school romance, it’s rather the cutest love story I have read so far. It’s adorably romantic, but not redundantly cheesy, very simple, yet powerful, poignant and very real. I think I loved everything about it; the genuineness, the characters, the conflicts, the description and the references. There isn’t a page where I haven’t smiled, giggled, gotten touched, or merely felt something.
1919 by Ahmed Mourad:

When it comes to Ahmed Mourad, it’s no doubt that what you are reading will be written beautifully, diligently and with perfect description. In a very different style than his previous novels, he blends precise historical events with fiction to ensure a well-written plot that proves his geniality in “1919”. It’s a very beautiful and moving novel that takes you to an ancient time in Egypt; the year 1919, where you find history, romance, action and mystery and where you also find a spectrum of characters that you either fall in love with, or sincerely despise. It has unexpected events and turns and it will surely pull you till the very end.  
Fledgling by Octavia Butler:

It’s a captivating science fiction novel with great description, compelling characters and a thought-provoking theme of self discovery and testing of human limits. Fledgling is about a seemingly young girl who wakes up with no recollection of who she is, till she slowly realizes that neither is she young nor human and begins to unravel the dark secrets of her past life to learn who she is and how can she save herself in a life that appears to be full of uncertainty and danger. The novel takes you to a perilous, imaginary world that will intrigue you and make you feel like you need to know and understand more with every page turn. Only a skillful author like Octavia Butler could pull of such a complex content and handle it gracefully like that.  
Utopia by Ahmed Khaled Tawfiq:

It’s a very creative and exceedingly imaginary novel that foresees how Egypt will be in 2023 when the gap between the rich and the poor reaches its highest level. It depicts a nightmare in a very meaningful manner, portraying inequality and shining on the difference between utmost luxury and dull oppression. With an interesting mixture of peculiarity and gloominess, Utopia makes a very untraditional novel. It broadens your mind and might leave you for days thinking of how the future will be and wondering if it will ever reach what’s described in this masterpiece and sincerely hoping not. 
The Gift by Cecilia Ahern:

The Gift centers on the story of Lou Suffern, a workaholic who is always distracted and spares his family no quality time. Therefore, he had only one wish; to be in two places at once, a wish that may come true when he encounters Gabe, a homeless street dweller. It’s a moralistic novel that is written beautifully, with flawless description and teaches you the real importance of time and how it “can’t be given, but can be shared”. I consider this to be the first book that had me in actual tears. It’s dramatic, agreeable and curative; just splendid.
Toya by Ashraf El-Ashmawy:

It’s a very touching novel where different characters and cultures overlap conveying very honest feelings. It may start off as a little boring but as soon as you get to know the characters and witness more of the events, it pulls you in an unexpected manner and you fall in love. Toya, a pretty African girl that holds more than just looks to her, comes into the life of an aspiring doctor to change his present, future and complete views on life. The novel takes romance to a whole new level of maturity and sincerity; it’s an invitation to follow your heart in all aspects of life. It moves between Egypt, Ethiopia and England and shows you how very different people from distant worlds and cultures can blend in together, yet have the strongest of bonds. 

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