Arabic Literature
English edition  
Jan  2010
140 pp.
Paperback
12.5X20 cm
$12.95
LE75
ISBN 978 977 416 367 8
For sale only in the Middle East

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Wolves of the Crescent Moon

Yousef Al-Mohaimeed
Translated by Anthony Calderbank

A luminous novel of hope and redemption from Saudi Arabia

In a Riyadh bus station, Turad, a bitter older man, resolves to leave the city he has come to loathe. Born into a Bedouin family, Turad left his desert home as a young man to work in the city—as a tea-boy, car-washer, security guard, and office messenger—after a traumatic event that cost him his left ear. By chance, he happens upon a green folder left behind by another traveler, containing official reports about an abandoned baby born outside wedlock and found in a cardboard box, and documents about his subsequent years in an orphanage and a foster home. As Turad imagines the life of this abandoned child, his memories stray into the secrets of his own past, and that of his friend Amm Tawfiq, an old Sudanese man brought to Saudi Arabia as a child, castrated, and sold into servitude. In this elegantly constructed narrative, Yousef Al-Mohaimeed reveals the surprising connections in the life stories of three damaged people—the Bedouin, the orphan, and the eunuch—to tell a haunting tale of modern Saudi society. Confounding stereotypical images of life in Saudi Arabia, Wolves of the Crescent Moon is a moving, troubling, and ultimately redemptive story of pain remembered and hope restored.
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Yousef Al-Mohaimeed was born in Riyadh in 1964. He has published several novels and short story collections, and has studied English and photography at Norwich University in the England. Anthony Calderbank has translated several works of modern Arabic fiction, most recently Miral al-Tahawy’s Gazelle Tracks (AUC Press, 2008). He lives and works in Khobar, Saudi Arabia.

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“At last an authentic voice from Saudi Arabia. Al-Mohaimeed has written a remarkable, rhythmic, genuine novel. Wolves of the Crescent Moon throbs with sensuality and moral courage, as if it didn’t take place in a society that denies the tick of the heart.”—Hanan al-Shaykh, author of Women of Sand and Myrrh

“A novel that draws you in from the very first lines and doesn’t let go, thanks to its style, language, and the way in which it highlights the wretched reality of the lives of those on society’s margins.”—al-Mustaqbal (Beirut)

“An exceptional work of imagination and writing.”—al-Riyadh (Riyadh)

“Wolves of the Crescent Moon uses magical reality and metaphor to revolt against the traditional power of social hierarchy.”—al-Hayat (London)

“A fascinating story of three souls disfigured by life and looking for peace and safety in a merciless world. . . . A fine read.”—Diana Abu-Jaber, author of Arabian Jazz and Crescent

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