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An Arab Melancholia (Semiotext
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About the Author

Abdellah Taia (born in 1973) is the author of six novels, including Salvation Army and An Arab Melancholia, both published by Semiotext(e), and Infidels. His novel Le jour du roi, about the death of Morocco's King Hassan II, won the 2010 Prix de Flore. He also directed and wrote the screenplay for the 2013 film adaptation of Salvation Army.

Reviews

Taia writes from within a distinctly different Arab culture in this passionate novel about two worlds intersecting.

-Pridesource: Between the Lines

There is light and space in his prose. And despair. At times, he uses the ellipsis suggestively...bringing out the apertures within and between words and thoughts, eliciting the unbridgeable gap between individuals. That is where desire seems to lie, and where belonging-and melancholia-is to be found in his writing.

-Bookforum
Melancholia offers a view into the life of a man still very much in the making, a man still searching for love and answers. At one point, he wonders, 'How are you supposed to go on living when you're totally entangled in the sad, bitter, exciting memory of someone who didn't love you back?' It is a question that cuts across gender, sexual orientation, culture, and time-and stumps anyone unfortunate enough to find himself in its path.-Words Without Borders

Taia writes from within a distinctly different Arab culture in this passionate novel about two worlds intersecting.

-Pridesource: Between the Lines

This is honest writing from a marginalized position. It leaves with its readers an insistence that through everything there is always something else that follows. It's neither a hesitant optimism nor a beaten-down acceptance.... It's something else, something more human. The weight of the world cannot be taken on as the Sisyphean boulder, but rather we have to just forget about the world and make sure we're moving forward.

-HTML Giant

This slim autobiographical novel by an openly gay man who lives between cultures in Egypt and France is the kind of wry, reflective narrative prose that feels like poetry. Beautiful.

-Advocate

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