Books: The Lady from Tel Aviv

PEN PROMOTES white on black





By Rabai al-Madhoun

Translated by Elliot Colla

Published by Telegram Books

In the economy class of a plane, the lives of two passengers intersect: Walid Dahman, a Palestinian writer, is returning to his family in Gaza for the first time in thirty-eight years, and Dana Ahova, an Israeli actress, is on her way back to Tel Aviv. As the night sky hurtles past, what each confides and conceals will expose the chasm between them in the land they both call home.

The Lady from Tel Aviv is both a meditation on the nature of fiction and an incisive exploration of the effects of occupation on a people and what it is to be a Palestinian. Al-Madhoun’s precise, poetic use of language and sardonic humour bring home political realities and how people live them, on both sides of the checkpoints.

RabaiBorn in al-Majdal, Palestine, in 1945, Rabai al-Madhoun is one of the Arab world’s rising literary stars. His other works include The Idiot of Khan Younis and The Taste of Separation. The Lady from Tel Aviv is a bestseller in the Arab world. He is an editor at the leading Arabic daily, al-Sharq al-awsat.


Elliott Colla is a prominent translator of modern Arabic fiction, including novels by Ibrahim al-Koni, Ibrahim Aslan and Idris Ali. He currently teaches Arabic literature at Georgetown University, Washington, DC


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