I, the Divine by Rabih Alameddine

I, the Divine

Rabih Alameddine

Sarah is torn between her past in war-ravaged Beirut and the freedom she enjoys in New York; but she always yearns for where she has left. Neither can she sustain a successful relationship, whether with husband, lover, parents or son. She seeks resolution by writing her memoir, but can't get beyond chapter one. The resulting book is comprised entirely of first chapters as she seeks ways into her past. These shifting perspectives and fresh starts give the book a surprising pace to go with its originality; and while sometimes confusing it flows well and all comes together in the end. A touching and quietly humorous tale.

Extract

For someone who had believed the main point of life was relationships, I had done a poor job of living ... I had failed every romantic relationship I had plunged into. The reasons for these failures continued to elude me, but the resulting feelings did not. I sometimes felt like I had been dropped into a sea of overwhelming sadness.

Parallels
  • Balthasar's Odyssey by Amin Maalouf
  • Journey by Moonlight (Pushkin Paper) by Antal Szerb
  • The Opposite of Fate by Amy Tan

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