Authors’ Favorites of 2012: Arabic fiction
About authors’ Favorites of 2012: Fiction, and finally, acclaimed Arab writers’ favorite novels of 2012. Some can be found on the “Arabic Booker” longlist.
About Muhsin Al-Ramli
*Ali Bader,( Iraqi novelist) :
“I have recently finished reading three ambitious Iraqi novels, The President’s Gardens (2012) by Muhsin Al-Ramli.
The President’s Gardens is a novel about three friends living in northern Iraqi village. Al-Ramli’s novel has strong political themes drawn from Iraqi social history, and gives a hard critical examination of the power held by the Saddam Hussein regime, and after, during the epoch of American occupation: the civil strife, unlawful killing, torture and ill treatment, kidnapping and hostages. It sheds some specific reflection, albeit in fictional guise, on the nature of the authoritism, and also analyzes the economics, politics, and rule of the régime as a history book might.”
*Hassan Blasim, (Iraqi short-story writer) :
“I would choose the novel by Muhsin Al-Ramli Fingers of Dates (2008).This novel is free from the exaggerated poetic language sometimes found in Arab narratives. And it’s an Iraqi novel that doesn’t use the language of melancholy and melodrama, as happens in Iraqi novels. It’s a clever novel — it explores with a sense of fun the depths of tragicomedy in Iraq during the dictatorship.”
*Ahmad Yamani, (Egyptian poet) :
“Al-Ramli now (with The President’s Gardens) returns with this new novel on war and dictatorship in Iraq. In spite of the brutality, in certain scenes, and the naked language, this novel presents Iraq’s pain in beautiful art.”