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Thread: Books set in the Middle East / Books about Expats

  1. #1
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    Mar 2019

    Books set in the Middle East / Books about Expats


    I'm moving to the Middle East this year, was wondering if you could recommend any of the following:
    1) Books set in the Middle East
    2) Books about expatriates.


  2. #2
    Registered User kev67's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Reading, England
    Alexandria Quartet by Lawrence Durrell. Some people think it's a masterpiece. Other people, like myself, think it's a load of pretension toss.
    According to Aldous Huxley, D.H. Lawrence once said that Balzac was 'a gigantic dwarf', and in a sense the same is true of Dickens.
    Charles Dickens, by George Orwell

  3. #3
    rat in a strange garret Whifflingpin's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    On the hill overlooking the harbour
    Eothen by Kinglake.
    Voices mysterious far and near,
    Sound of the wind and sound of the sea,
    Are calling and whispering in my ear,
    Whifflingpin! Why stayest thou here?

  4. #4
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    Mar 2019
    I am an alien on a training mission.
    Paul Bowles of course! Expat extraordinaire. "The Sheltering Sky" is soooo good...bleak, but worth it.

    Don't pass up Naguib Mahfouz! His Cairo Trilogy is on my short list of readings.
    Last edited by Ekimhtims; 03-24-2019 at 09:43 AM.

  5. #5
    Registered User Jackson Richardson's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2012
    Somewhere in the South East of England
    Olivia Manning - The Levant Trilogy - sequel to The Balkan Trilogy. In the first three books the heroine and her impossible husband are in Romania at the start of World War 2 and escape to Alexandria for the second trilogy.

    Muriel Spark - The Mandelbaum Gate - set around Jerusalem in the 60s.

    Which bit of the Middle East did you have in mind? It's a big place.
    Previously JonathanB

    The more I read, the more I shall covet to read. Robert Burton The Anatomy of Melancholy Partion3, Section 1, Member 1, Subsection 1

  6. #6
    Ecurb Ecurb's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Eugene, OR
    "Arabian Sands"by Wilfred Thesiger. Thesiger was one of the last great British explorers. He was the first European to explore the empty southern section of the Arabian desert -- which had never been mapped or explored as recently as the 1950s. He wrote a book about it, and this is it.

  7. #7
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    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Thesiger was a good writer. He was a friend of Gavin Maxwell also a good writer who wrote A Reed Shaken by the Wind (Biblical allusion) about the Marsh Arabs of Southern Iraq. Dated now but still interesting.

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