The author of the highly acclaimed The Yacoubian Building returns with a story of love, sex, friendship, hatred, and ambition set in Chicago, with a cast of. The novelist Alaa Al Aswany places his emigré characters in post-9/11 Chicago. Review: Chicago by Alaa Al Aswany. Sukhdev Sandhu. AM BST 07 Sep Sukhdev Sandhu sinks into a gripping, steamy and occasionally soapy novel.

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Al Aswany seems to see the novelist’s role as being close to that of a schoolteacher. There are also several break-ups here, and sex — often of the forced, or at least coerced variety — plays a role in some of them as well.

Review: Chicago by Alaa Al Aswany

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Shayma a rural girl at her 30’s yet unmarried pursue an intimate relationship with Tariq. Nagi, whose sympathetically portrayed combination of radical politics and literary dreams must surely be close to Al Aswany’s heart; Shaymaa, a high-achieving but sexually gauche student with whom the incorrigibly bumptious general’s son Tariq has fallen in love; Danana, president of the Egyptian Student Union in America, and in the pay of his country’s secret police, who wields his power with obnoxious swagger and has managed to bag himself a wife from an affluent family.

Then there are the students: No trivia or quizzes yet. Having read the Yacoubian Building, I was interest in this new book and I think that it is good to read “Chicago”. Adwany a concentration of Egyptian histologists, both as faculty and students, is hard to believe, but then so zlaa many of Aswany’s American details — but then Chicago isn’t meant to shine a light on America, and turns chicavo to be as much an Egyptian novel as The Yacoubian Building was.

Chicago, his eagerly awaited second novel, is not as interesting or fully realised as the first, but has undeniable charms of its own. Particularly appealing about the novel is the forthrightness with which Aswany addresses the issue of Egypt’s contemporary political corruption and decay; the name of the leader that’s at the rotting head of this administration, Hosni Mubarak, is chicwgo mentioned, but he is often and unmistakably referred to, and one of the central occurrences in the book is a chiczgo visit that takes him to Chicago.


This isn’t chlcago novel designed for postcolonial theorists; it’s a rickety but surprisingly forceful engine for social change.

Chicago (novel) – Wikipedia

Monday 31 December Hermione Laake is currently reading it Nov 21, Bianca marked it as to-read Sep 29, The novel could do with a cast list. To juggle around so many characters, and to make their paths intersect without the novel descending into a soap opera, is a task that Al Aswany takes on with only fitful success.

To these Egyptians abroad the novelist adds a small group of Americans, mostly professors in the department of histology. Ultimately, Chicago is a truly brave work, and its translation offers Sawany a provocative, vital perspective on the U. If notability cannot be established, the article is likely to be mergedredirectedor deleted. There are no discussion topics on this book yet. There’s a problem loading this menu right now.

I am on chapter 4 and struggling with this book. A modern Arabic Novel. Chicago isn’t a very good book, but there’s enough to it — and too few others like it from that region — to make it worthwhile. The characters were vividly portrayed and I appreciate very much the focus on life abroad for this engaging group of Egyptians. His remarkable gift for narrative momentum sustains Chicago.

chicago by Alaa Al Aswany

Professor Graham alax married to a younger black woman and their relationship is a moving target for intolerance. English Choose a language for shopping.

Nagi, expelled from his university in Cairo for his politics, causes another form of strife in Chicago when his credentials and nationality ignite a heated debate among the faculty reviewing his application for admission.


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Between two worlds

It may not reach chucago heights of The Yacoubian Building, but it reveals a gifted novelist in mid-flight. The theme of political repression is interesting in light of last year’s Arab Spring and the ouster of Hosni Mubarak.

The novel is about a group of Egyptians who are doing their postgraduate studies in Aswan of Illinois at Chicagothey face many obstacles during their stay in Chicago.

Sep 15, Meron Semere rated it it was amazing. Magdalena added it Oct 15, Thanks for telling us about the problem. Amazon Advertising Find, attract, and engage customers. One of the characters works for Egyptian intelligence, essentially spying on Egyptian Ex-pats in the Chicago area. Nagi Abd al-Samad, an Egyptian student at Illinois, engages in both histology chiacgo poetry.

Danana is president of the Student Union’s of Egyptians in America and quite involved with the admitted Egyptian students at the university. Trained as a dentist in Egypt and Chicago, it took him 9 years to earn his degree from Chicago National University where he spent 17 years in his life, al-Aswany has contributed numerous articles to Egyptian newspapers on literature, politics, and social issues. May Learn how and when to remove this template message.

Judyta marked it as to-read Mar 30, Is this an unreliable narrator as with The Aswang Fundamentalist? Chicago is striking for the attention it devotes to questions of sexuality. Learn more about Amazon Prime.