[]
[]
We're sorry, the Portable Library Bookmobile will be out of service due to mechanical problems until Tuesday, Dec 2. Our apologies for any inconvenience.
All Library locations will be closed Thursday, Nov 27, in celebration of Thanksgiving. We will re-open for regular hours on Friday, Nov. 28. Looking for something to read, watch, or listen to? Explore our download and streaming resources and share with friends.

An Unnecessary Woman

Alameddine, Rabih

(Book - 2013)
Average Rating: 3.5 stars out of 5.
An Unnecessary Woman
 Add a Comment  Add Tags
Print
"Aaliya Sohbi lives alone in her Beirut apartment, surrounded by stockpiles of books. Godless, fatherless, childless, and divorced, Aaliya is her family's 'unnecessary appendage.' Every year, she translates a new favorite book into Arabic, then stows it away. The thirty-seven books that Aaliya has translated over her lifetime have never been read-- by anyone. After overhearing her neighbors, 'the three witches,' discussing her too-white hair, Aaliya accidentally dyes her hair too blue. In this breathtaking portrait of a reclusive woman's late-life crisis, readers follow Aaliya's digressive mind as it ricochets across visions of past and present Beirut. Colorful musings on literature, philosophy, and art are invaded by memories of the Lebanese Civil War and Aaliya's own volatile past. As she tries to overcome her aging body and spontaneous emotional upwellings, Aaliya is faced with an unthinkable disaster that threatens to shatter the little life she has left" -- from publisher's web site.
Publisher: New York :, Grove Press,, [2013]
Edition: First edition
ISBN: 0802122140
9780802122148
Branch Call Number: x
Characteristics: 291 pages ; 22 cm

Opinion

Community Activity

Quotes

Add a Quote

Jun 19, 2014
  • quagga rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

Most of the books published these days consist of a series of whines followed by an epiphany. I call these memoirs and confessional novels happy tragedies.

Jun 19, 2014
  • quagga rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

To write is to know that you are not home. I stopped loving Odysseus as soon as he landed back in Ithaca.

Jun 19, 2014
  • quagga rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

To paraphrase the everparaphraseable Freud, who said something to the effect that when you speak about the past you lie with every breath you take, I will say this:
When you write about the past, you lie with each letter, with every grapheme, including the goddamn comma.
Memory, memoir, autobiography -- lies, lies, all lies.

Comment

Add a Comment

I lived in Lebanon for two years 1960-62 and the title "An Unnecessary Woman" resonates with me as I met a few of these women whose lives have haunted me ever since.

The women that I knew were not intellectuals as it seems Aaliya is, she, at least has her books which I understand explicitly. The women whom I knew were "kept" by their brothers or other family members and their lives were unfathomable to me — a young Western woman who felt that she had a whole and interesting life ahead of her — which is somewhat how it has played out.

I am looking forward to reading this book as it seems as if it will fill in the gaps that western newspaper reporters have not been able to do about life in Beirut since the '60s.

"At 72, Aaliya Sobhi has been alone for most of her life -- divorced and childless, she's considered "unnecessary" by both her family and her Lebanese culture. But she has her books and an almost obsessive desire to translate her favourite novels into Arabic, which she then stores in her apartment, sharing them with no one. Set during a single day, and composed almost entirely of Aaliya's own thoughts, memories, and discourses on literature, this is a book for book lovers. "Dip into it, make a reading list from it, or simply bask in its sharp, smart prose", suggests Booklist." Fiction A to Z March 2014 newsletter http://www.libraryaware.com/996/NewsletterIssues/ViewIssue/7b91ded4-ca5a-4608-8a16-ef2289b1f6ae?postId=f9c8c515-1dd1-45e1-a5c7-70f56e57d920

Age

Add Age Suitability

There are no ages for this title yet.

Summary

Add a Summary

There are no summaries for this title yet.

Notices

Add a Notice

There are no notices for this title yet.

Videos

Add a Video

There are no videos for this title yet.

Find it at PPL

  Loading...

Explore Further


Browse the Shelf

Subject Headings


Recommendations

  Loading...

Powered by BiblioCommons.
app05 Version eventuell-fix Last updated 2014/11/25 13:07