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Princess: A True Story of Life Behind the…

Princess: A True Story of Life Behind the Veil in Saudi Arabia

by Jean Sasson

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1,621376,710 (3.78)22
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    Nicht ohne meine Tochter (Leishai)
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    Between Two Worlds: Escape from Tyranny: Growing Up in the Shadow of Saddam by Zainab Salbi (itbgc)
  3. 00
    In the Land of Invisible Women by Qanta Ahmed (Mrs.Stansbury)
    Mrs.Stansbury: Each book glimpses life behind the veils of women in Saudi Arabia and reveals unique views and different perspectives. If you enjoy one you'll enjoy the other.

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Showing 1-5 of 34 (next | show all)
I was initially very wary of this book. I saw that it had be written by a white woman and was afraid that it might be either an exotic stereotyping or a preachy Islam-is-cruel-to-their-women tirade.

I was both relieved and stunned to be proven so wrong. This is probably one of my favorite books of 2018 and I am already scrambling to get my hands on the others in the series. The Sultana's voice is so real and human that I was equal parts in love with and frustrated at her faults. A badass feminist if ever there was one, but a human who has been blinded to the issues of others, made mistakes, and grown comfortable at times even within oppression. Her story was a roller coaster ride of emotion--hope, despair, rage, you name it--that left me sometimes soaring and sometimes sobbing. Some horrors made me pause and put aside the book because the realization that these were things that occurred in recent history was too much to take in. While I would've thought that hearing about the oppression these women face would've made me grateful for the freedoms we have here in the States, instead it inflamed my own rage at the current outlandish and unspeakable treatment women are still suffering even in countries like the US that claim to be "better than", "civilized", and "modern".

Additionally I learned a great deal more about Saudi Arabia, Islam, and the Middle East in general than I had known before (not that I really knew much to begin with). ( )
  ilikeike | Sep 24, 2018 |
One extra star because this book starts needed conversations. I'm on the fence about whether Sultana is a real person but in the end. I don't think it matters; the issues seem real enough. ( )
  Kuglar | Mar 28, 2018 |
hard to believe that if this is true, saudi people didn't know who sultana was. how much can you rearrange and still be true?
well written, informative about saudi life. ( )
  mahallett | Jul 2, 2016 |
A quick read (got it done in one round-trip to Vegas) that's distressing and eye-opening. The Saudi royals may have it all in terms of wealth but the social structure and rules as "inspired" by Islam doesn't bring a lot of personal happiness or growth, especially for the women. An inside look that doesn't provide a lot of hope for a system that will be slow to change, if ever. Not terribly literary writing but the subject matter is absorbing. Will be interesting to follow Sultana's continued story in the two follow-up titles...if I ever get around to them! Took me years before I got to this one! ( )
  Salsabrarian | Feb 2, 2016 |
This story is fascinating and important...the oppression of women in Saudi Arabia (and other Arabic nations), but the writing was rather pedantic, stilted, repetitive, and preachy.. I'm not sure how much of that is the tone of the princess herself and how much is the author. At any rate, I'd still read more books by this author since the subjects are so interesting. ( )
  Connie-D | Jan 17, 2016 |
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In a land where kings still rule, I am a princess.
Ali slapped me to the ground, but I declined to hand over the shiny red apple just given to me by the Pakistani cook.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0967673747, Paperback)

Sultana is a Saudi Arabian princess, a woman born to fabulous, uncountable wealth. She has four mansions on three continents, her own private jet, glittering jewels, designer dresses galore. But in reality she lives in a gilded cage. She has no freedom, no control over her own life, no value but as a bearer of sons. Hidden behind her black floor-length veil, she is a prisoner, jailed by her father, her husband, her sons, and her country.Sultana is a member of the Saudi royal family, closely related to the king. For the sake of her daughters, she has decided to take the risk of speaking out about the life of women in her country, regardless of their rank. She must hide her identity for fear that the religous leaders in her country would call for her death to punish her honesty. Only a woman in her position could possibly hope to escape from being revealed and punished, despite her cloak and anonymity.Sultana tells of her own life, from her turbulent childhood to her arranged marriage--a happy one until her husband decided to displace her by taking a second wife--and of the lives of her sisters, her friends and her servants. Although they share affection, confidences and an easy camaraderie within the confines of the women's quarters, they also share a history of appaling oppressions, everyday occurrences that in any other culture would be seen as shocking human rights violations; thirteen-year-old girls forced to marry men five times their age, young women killed by drowning, stoning, or isolation in the "women's room," a padded, windowless cell where women are confined with neither light nor conversation until death claims them.By speaking out, Sultana risks bringing the wrath of the Saudi establishment upon her head and te heads of her children. But by telling her story to Jean Sasson, Sultana has allowed us to see beyond the veils of this secret society, to the heart of a nation where sex, money, and power reign supreme.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 17:58:13 -0400)

(see all 4 descriptions)

A Saudi woman discusses what life is like for women in her country, describing how women are sold into marriage to men five times their age, are treated as their husbands' slaves, and are often murdered for the slightest transgression.

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