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In the Country of Men (2006)
by Hisham Matar
Booker Prize (160)
Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0385340435, Paperback)Libya, 1979. Nine-year-old Suleiman’s days are circumscribed by the narrow rituals of childhood: outings to the ruins surrounding Tripoli, games with friends played under the burning sun, exotic gifts from his father’s constant business trips abroad. But his nights have come to revolve around his mother’s increasingly disturbing bedside stories full of old family bitterness. And then one day Suleiman sees his father across the square of a busy marketplace, his face wrapped in a pair of dark sunglasses. Wasn’t he supposed to be away on business yet again? Why is he going into that strange building with the green shutters? Why did he lie?
Suleiman is soon caught up in a world he cannot hope to understand—where the sound of the telephone ringing becomes a portent of grave danger; where his mother frantically burns his father’s cherished books; where a stranger full of sinister questions sits outside in a parked car all day; where his best friend’s father can disappear overnight, next to be seen publicly interrogated on state television.
In the Country of Men is a stunning depiction of a child confronted with the private fallout of a public nightmare. But above all, it is a debut of rare insight and literary grace.
From the Hardcover edition.
(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:25:03 -0400)
Ultimately, this is a novel most concerned with relationships between people - friends, spouses, comrades, and , particularly, parents and their children. Matar movingly charts the ways in which love endures in situtations of great represasion, but salso shows how repression threatens everything, even love, putting relationships under a strain that can be unendurable .... Whatever his subject, Matar writes beautifully"--Bookjacket.
An edition of this book was published by Penguin Australia.
An edition of this book was published by Tantor Media.
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