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Persiana: Recipes from the Middle East & Beyond
Persiana: Recipes from the Middle East & Beyond
by Sabrina Ghayour
Edition: Hardcover
Price: £11.99

5.0 out of 5 stars easy to follow recipes that turn out beautifully, 30 Aug. 2015
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Delicious,easy to follow recipes that turn out beautifully. Food to enjoy with the family and food to impress friends. All ingredients easily found in the supermarket. I love it!


The Dinner
The Dinner
by Herman Koch
Edition: Paperback

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars An unexpected style of thriller, 21 July 2013
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This review is from: The Dinner (Paperback)
The Dinner sets out to demonstrate how two sets of parents deal with the realisation that their sons have been involved in a serious crime. The plot is structured around an arranged dinner between the parents (the fathers are brothers) to manage the situation. The background to the crime and family are revealed retrospectively during the course of the evening.

The novel is written in the first person, it is the voice of the main protagonist who often has disturbing reactions to events in his son's life and his own. I use the word disturbing because the main protagonist reacts violently to these situations.
The narrative however is full of many thoughtful observations about parenting, families, siblings and relationships and in particular sibling rivalry.

This is a gripping and dramatic novel but written in a strangely calm and detached style, it reflects on how far parents will go to preserve their children's future and their family's happiness. It is because of this detached style the reader is often drawn into sympathising with the parents as they rationalise their rather surprising attitudes and actions. The outcome however is shocking.

I thought both the structure and the style of the novel worked really well and the dynamics of the brother's relationship very true to life as was the setting in the expensive restaurant with its pretentious staff. Although the novel deals with an unsettling issue it is not without humour. It highlights prejudices in society, the evident lack of a moral compass in a desperate situation, ambition and wanting the do the right thing for all the wrong reasons.

A very thoughtful and worthwhile read and an excellent translation.


Dear Zari: Hidden Stories from Women of Afghanistan
Dear Zari: Hidden Stories from Women of Afghanistan
by Zarghuna Kargar
Edition: Paperback
Price: £12.99

5.0 out of 5 stars A shocking insight into the lives of Afgan women, 21 Jan. 2012
A story of bravery and endurance written by a women who managed to escape the imprisonment of female life in Afganistan. All the important aspect of life such as equality,education,love and choice are denied to these women and their lives are dominated by cruel and unfair treatment in the name of tradition and religion. However Zari through the medium of radio, educates and encourages women to find ways to bring about change. These stories are shocking but the courage of these women is inspiring and through exposure one hopes that eventually women will be treated less like chattels and more like human beings.


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