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[19 May 2015 | No Comment | 154 views]
Yet another great appreciation of Alwan’s Beavers, in Canada

An interview conducted by Marie-Christine Blais, for La Presse, published in April 10th.
Your narrator, Ghaleb, draws continually striking parallels between beavers he discovered in Oregon and his family who lives in Riyadh. How did you get this idea?
I grew up in Saudi Arabia, where beavers do not exist. My knowledge on the subject was therefore superficial, and I was not interested in it, anyway! It was when I moved to Portland [Oregon], in 2006, to finish my master that I really got to know this animal.

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[3 May 2015 | No Comment | 404 views]
Le Monde des Livres’ beautiful review of Hoda Barakat’s “The kingdom of this earth”

This article by Catherine Simon, was published in French, by Le Monde des Livres
September 2012
What follows is an approximate translation into English.
A historical novel, then? A parody rather. The stories told here are full of errors, as childhood memories and village gossip usually are. This is one of the strokes of genius of this kaleidoscopic book, an almost ethnological dive of a writer among her people: everything is truthful, nothing is quite true. It was nice to come across the shadows of Mussolini and Petain, President Chamoun or that of General …

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[3 May 2015 | No Comment | 155 views]

To listen to the program, click on this link.

Press »

[16 Mar 2015 | No Comment | 174 views]
Alwan’s Beavers: “A rare and brilliant take on the midlife crisis”

French Magazine “Lui” offers a brief review of Alwan’s Beavers, February
A rich Saudi man, overwhelmed by his family of morons and disenchanted mistress, leaves for America, the best place to host his melancholy. On a riverbed in Oregon, he meets a beaver, and seeks to find his way between contemplation, alcohol and personal development meetings. A rare and brilliant take on the midlife crisis – Arab style.
French original below
Un riche Saoudien accablé par sa famille de débiles et sa maîtresse désabusée part pour l’Amérique, pays plus propre à accueillir son …

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[8 Mar 2015 | No Comment | 162 views]
Hilary Plum interviews Youssef Rakha in ‘Music and Literature’

Below is an excerpt, read the whole interview here.
Youssefl Rakha: I go on about this so as to put you in the picture: the nineties, when I started showing my writing to people—that’s when the clash between younger prose poets and older guardians of the poetic ancien régime took place. This is partly of course what The Crocodiles is about. So, when I started writing, I found myself writing prose poems though I thought I wanted to write short stories.

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[22 Feb 2015 | No Comment | 125 views]
Beavers is out in French!  And featured in Radio France Culture as the “Saudi Houellebecq”

Mohamad Hasan Alwan’s novel “Beavers” (Al Qondos, Dar al saqi) was recently published in France by le Seuil.