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Marrakech Noir by Yassin Adnan

Marrakech Noir

by Yassin Adnan (Editor)

Other authors: Mohamed Achaari (Contributor), Taha Adnan (Contributor), Yassin Adnan (Contributor), Lahcen Bakour (Contributor), Abdelkader Benali (Contributor)10 more, Mahi Binebine (Contributor), Allal Bourqia (Contributor), Hanane Derkaoui (Contributor), Halima Zine El Abidine (Contributor), Fouad Laroui (Contributor), Fatiha Morchid (Contributor), Karima Nadir (Contributor), Mohamed Nedali (Contributor), My Seddik Rabbaj (Contributor), Mohamed Zouhair (Contributor)

Series: Akashic Books Noir Series

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Showing 1-5 of 8 (next | show all)
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
Unfortunately I had a very hard time getting into the stories of this book. I felt that they all came close but just slightly missed the mark in some way I cannot put my finger on. However, I do love the idea of the Akashic Noir series and will absolutely try reading another one in the future. ( )
  mtrumbo | Oct 3, 2018 |
Marrakech Noir is one of the recent releases in the fabulous Akashic Noir Series. This time our guest editor is Yassin Adnan who takes us to Marrakech, introducing us to the grim and gritty side of his city. The book is organized into three sections: Hanging Crimes, The Red and the Black, and Outside the City’s Walls. The first section is more familiar in feeling for noir fans. The first story “The Mysterious Painting” is among my favorites, a mystery solved at the dinner table of a restaurant, so clever. I also liked “The Mummy in the Pasha’s House” which is also a fairly traditional mystery told through stories.

The second section, The Red and the Black refers to the idea that Marrakech is a red city, not a noir city, of joy, not crime. Here are stories of corruption and oppression, as well as crime. “Mama Aicha” about a woman advocating for her son’s release from prison just broke my heart and “Delirium” was a powerful story of two people who were linked together forever to their great loss.

The last section, Outside the City’s Walls, explores the outlying area, home to the very poor and new immigrants. “Black Lover” was upsetting, using a racist epithet over and over and over, this was in translation so perhaps in Arabic, the epithet is less fraught, though I doubt it. It was unnecessary to the plot. The best story in this section is “A Person Fit for Murder” told by the murderer as he tries to understand his impulsive act.

Anyone who has followed my book review blog for any length of time is probably aware that I love the Akashic Noir Series. I think these books are great gifts and a completely different approach to armchair travel. I confess I have found Baghdad Noir and Marrakech Noir more difficult than most books in the series. It’s funny because I studied Arabic, though I don’t remember much beyond how to conjugate kataba (to write).

The stories in Marrakech Noir are more satisfying and more familiar, but both are full of stories that give so much backstory on neighbors and others who have very little to do with the plot, the stories are fulsome in their details, introducing people who really are not part of the story except as witnesses. Usually, in short stories, everything is trimmed away, so the fulsomeness is unfamiliar. I still enjoyed the anthology and recommend adding it to your collection of traveling the world on the Noir Express.

I received an e-galley of Marrakech Noir from the publisher through Edelweiss.

Marrakech Noir at Akashic Books
Yassin Adnan on Facebook and bio at Arabic Fiction
Akashic Noir Series

https://tonstantweaderreviews.wordpress.com/2018/09/20/9781617754739/ ( )
  Tonstant.Weader | Sep 20, 2018 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
This is a fun collection of crime; Morocco has no tradition of crime writing so some of the stories are not traditional whodunits but they are all (or mostly) fun and enlightening to read. You get a vivid picture of Marrakech and its people, culture, food, atmosphere. I enjoyed the armchair travel aspect as well as the stories themselves. Another winner from Soho Crime. ( )
  bostonbibliophile | Sep 20, 2018 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
This is the latest in the Akashic Books series of dark short stories set in cities in the US and throughout the world. This collection of fifteen stories by Moroccan authors is most likely most American readers' introduction to these authors and to Moroccan literature in general. Many of the authors are winners of a variety of national and international prizes in literature. The stories range from psychological fiction to crime stories to domestic drama and even fantasy. One can learn a great deal about the culture and society of this ancient/modern city. Akashic Books does a great service in bringing these authors to the attention of a wider reading public. Recommended. ( )
  mclane | Sep 18, 2018 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
Marrakech is a magical city. Danger, if there is danger, is hidden in the fantastical. In his introduction to Marrakech Noir, editor Yasmin Adnan says “ Marrakechis are willing to read every type of story about the city — except those that are garbed in black”. And so this collection of noir fiction is unlike any you will find in any other city in the world. Many stories are cloaked in a style reminiscent of the Arabian Nights, tales woven with a comforting cadence that lulls you into the heart of a tale that can be as dark and seedy as any you are likely to read. This is one of the better collections of stories that I have read in the series, highly recommended. ( )
  abealy | Sep 8, 2018 |
Showing 1-5 of 8 (next | show all)
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» Add other authors

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Adnan, YassinEditorprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Achaari, MohamedContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Adnan, TahaContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Adnan, YassinContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Bakour, LahcenContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Benali, AbdelkaderContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Binebine, MahiContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Bourqia, AllalContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Derkaoui, HananeContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
El Abidine, Halima ZineContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Laroui, FouadContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Morchid, FatihaContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Nadir, KarimaContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Nedali, MohamedContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Rabbaj, My SeddikContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Zouhair, MohamedContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
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Akashic Books continues its award-winning series of original noir anthologies, launched in 2004 wiht BROOKLYN NOIR. Each book comprises all new stories, each one set in a distinct neighborhood or location within the respective city. North Africa finally enters the Noir Series arena with a finely crafted volume of dark stories, translated from Arabic, French, and Dutch.
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