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Girls of Riyadh by Rajaa Alsanea

Girls of Riyadh (original 2005; edition 2008)

by Rajaa Alsanea, Rajaa Alsanea (Translator), Marilyn Booth (Translator)

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8085611,287 (3.38)56
Title:Girls of Riyadh
Authors:Rajaa Alsanea
Other authors:Rajaa Alsanea (Translator), Marilyn Booth (Translator)
Info:Penguin (Non-Classics) (2008), Edition: Reprint, Paperback, 304 pages
Collections:Your library
Tags:Saudi Arabia, Islam

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Girls of Riyadh by Rajaa Alsanea (2005)



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English (47)  German (2)  French (2)  Dutch (2)  Swedish (1)  Spanish (1)  Norwegian (1)  All languages (56)
Showing 1-5 of 47 (next | show all)
What I liked about this book was that it was set in Saudi Arabia and it let you into the lives of upper class women in Saudi Arabia. I had no prior knowledge of day to day life in Saudi Arabia and I found that very interesting.

What I didn't like was that I felt this was the Saudi version of chick lit. It seemed to have lots of women who's big goal was to fall in love and catch themselves a husband. And in order to get the husband they had to be deceptive and play games. That part of the book annoyed me. I felt like there must be more to their lives than just fall in love and snag a good husband. ( )
  KamGeb | Aug 31, 2015 |
Not predictable. Intricate yet gossipy. ( )
  jessicaofthebees | Aug 15, 2015 |
Not predictable. Intricate yet gossipy. ( )
  valerietheblonde | Aug 5, 2015 |
A foray into the possibilities of love taken from the perspective of 4 young women. Not brilliant writing, nor deep thought. It is what it is. ( )
  TomMcGreevy | Jul 16, 2015 |
This was apparently a bit of a phenomenon when it was published, a Sex & the City take on Saudi society by a young Saudi woman studying in the US. It’s a shame then that it’s all a bit juvenile. It’s presented as a serial told via email by the author, who prefaces each chapter with an email “answering” some of the responses she’s received to the previous chapter. The story itself is about four young women – Lamees, Michelle, Gamrah and Sadeem. Gamrah marries Rashid, and travels with him to the US, where he is studying. But he seems more interested in a prior US girlfriend, and Gamrah finds it hard to cope with life in the West. She returns to Riyadh, pregnant. Sadeem falls in love, arrangements are made, contracts exchanged, but a couple of days before the ceremony she succumbs to his blandishments and lets him take it too far… so he divorces her. Michelle falls for a young man from a good family, but his mother won’t hear of her son marrying beneath him, so he breaks it off. And Lamees is a bit of wild thing, making friends with Shi’ites, visiting chat rooms, and getting arrested for meeting a young man in a café. And other things happen too. While it shows the appalling treatment of women in Saudi well, and I realise English is not the writer’s first language, but it is the translator’s, this could really have done with a lot of a polish. The novel is structured to look like the titillating adventures of an amateur writer, and the prose reads like it was written by an amateur too. ( )
  iansales | Apr 12, 2015 |
Showing 1-5 of 47 (next | show all)
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» Add other authors (7 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Rajaa Alsaneaprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Aabakken, AnneTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Booth, MarilynTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Colombo, ValentinaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Corthay, SimonTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Mossaad, AntonTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Rooke, TetzTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Smiths-Jacob, BertaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Woillez, CharlotteTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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"Verily, Allah does not change a people's condition until they change what is in themselves." -- Qur'an, Surat Al-Ra'd (The Chapter of Thunder), Verse 11
To my most beloved; Mom and sister Rasha and to all my friends, the Girls of Riyadh
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Ladies and Gentlemen: You are invited to join me in one of the most explosive scandals and noisiest, wildest all-night parties around.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 014311347X, Paperback)

When Rajaa Alsanea boldly chose to open up the hidden world of Saudi women—their private lives and their conflicts with the traditions of their culture—she caused a sensation across the Arab world. Now in English, Alsanea’s tale of the personal struggles of four young upper-class women offers Westerners an unprecedented glimpse into a society often veiled from view. Living in restrictive Riyadh but traveling all over the globe, these modern Saudi women literally and figuratively shed traditional garb as they search for love, fulfillment, and their place somewhere in between Western society and their Islamic home.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:00:31 -0400)

(see all 2 descriptions)

The tale of four young women university students from Riyadh follows their struggles to navigate the precarious paths between desire, fulfillment, and Islamic tradition while witnessing how the Arab world is being changed by new economic and political realities.… (more)

(summary from another edition)

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