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Sheikhs, Lies and Real Estate: The Untold Story of Dubai Paperback – 2 Jan 2013


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Product details

  • Paperback: 316 pages
  • Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform (2 Jan 2013)
  • ISBN-10: 148112952X
  • ISBN-13: 978-1481129527
  • Product Dimensions: 22 x 15 x 2.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 330,432 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

JR Roth is an author, commentator and satirist. He has written for various publications on topics as diverse as politics, history, literature, economics and popular culture. He is celebrated for his witty and often controversial style. JR enjoys reading, art, music and the theatre.

JR is a graduate of Oxford University. He currently lives between London, New York and Dubai.

You can follow JR on Twitter @Jrroth_author, and on Facebook.

Product Description

About the Author

JR Roth is an author, commentator and satirist. He has written for various publications on topics as diverse as politics, history, literature, economics and popular culture. He is celebrated for his witty and often controversial style. JR enjoys reading, art, music and the theatre. JR is a graduate of Oxford University. He currently lives between London, New York and Dubai. You can follow JR on Twitter @Jrroth_author, and on Facebook.

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Rocco Siffredi on 20 July 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
The main character's story is obviously a compound of several real peoples' accounts and as such it makes for a good, fast paced and extremely enjoyable read.

It pretty much lays out a raw picture of real Dubai untinted by the relentless PR machine that paints such a pretty picture of Dubai in the whole world's mind.

In this story, Dubai is the main character, not the narrator himself. It's main focus is on events rather than the protagonists, so we never gain much insight into their personal background stories or psychology. This sort of approach renders all the characters rather two-dimensional and shallow. However, it seems to be working perfectly when you realize Dubai is an empty soulless city which attracts empty soulless people (opinion formed well before reading this book).

My only major rebuke is with the main character who should be portrayed with a bit more personality. He's just as flat and boring as all the other characters (yet somehow he's making friends with ease). Being generic, nice and not polarising seems to be working just fine for him.

But what really bothers me is his complete lack of involvement with the ladies. This is a young man in his prime and even though his hormone levels may not be relevant to the story of Dubai (which is the main focus here) his complete lack of interest in sexual relationships during his four years in Dubai make him seem that much more unlikely as a human being.
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By JudithM on 28 Sep 2014
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Fascinating to read this story from the perspective of someone on the inside as it were. Having lived in the Middle East for many years, notably Qatar and Bahrain, rumours were abound from the early nineties firstly about the investment opportunities then the madness of the rapid growth through to the bubble bursting. It might have been interesting to have heard more from the people of the Emirates themselves or the poor Indian labourers who were shamelessly exploited. What happened to them after all the building stopped? Many Expats live a life that they could never have in their native country and end up having delusions of grandeur which inevitably leads to living above their means and increasing their debts. This is the story of greed and self destruction.
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I decided to order this book after searching for a book set in the Emirates and this seems to be one of the few books that is! I thoroughly enjoyed reading this book and finished it in a day as I couldn't put it down - the story is fairly fast paced and revolves mainly around one character throughout.
However, this book does give off a fairly negative impression of Dubai - as a big fan myself I find this to be slightly sad, however I like the real life events that have been written into the story such as the building of the Burj Khalifa etc. Overall, would highly recommend and it's a shame there's not a sequel/series.
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After visiting Dubai,and needing a new book to read,this seemed like a great choice.Don't get me wrong it's a good story and kept me busy for hours,but I just expected that the ending would have been a bit different.How much was true?How much was borrowed from other people?Yes the book was not meant to be an explosive undercover tell all.But to say it was a book that they didn't want telling?Well that was a bit far.However it was a good read and it was not slow or pain full,just don't expect exclusive story tales.
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By AvidReader on 18 Jun 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
A very interesting tale of one man's experience of the rise and fall of Dubai. Well written and informative, a detailed account of what expat life is really like out there. Although I would like to know what happened to the author after he left Dubai, the ending is a bit abrupt, but a thought provoking read nonetheless.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By J R Anderson on 6 Aug 2014
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Great book but need to have lived there to really understand it
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