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on 14 May 2014
Whilst looking for writing by Victorian female Orientalists in the Middle East, I ran across this title while and picked it up (Kindle version), hoping for a contemporary perspective on the area from a Westerner's eyes. Also praying it wouldn't be overly cheesy-romantic tale full of handsome dark-eyed men on Arabian steeds, coloured robes flying behind them as they rode across the desert sands. Thankfully it wasn't like that, just a simple tale related by a down-to-earth young woman from New Zealand, who went traveling in a gap year and never meant to meet her lover on that trip. This is the story about the chapter of Marguerite's life with her husband Mohammed in Jordan, which she called home for 20 years (before he passed away from diabetes complications).

"Married to a Bedouin" reads like someone's telling their story over many afternoon coffees, with some funny anecdotes, some bittersweet, so if you're looking here for some deep socio-political commentary from a Gertrude Bell type, you won't find it. Just a nice lady who misses her life partner greatly, and wanted to share their lovely story. Recommended (especially if you want some intimate insights into Petra/Jordan before your next holiday there).
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on 21 April 2017
I loved every bit of this book from begining to end. Anyone who is interested in how, the real Bedouin's live, needs to read this book....Has told by a native New Zealander,... Who lived the majority of her life, in Petra,... Married to a Bedouin ..... As The Title of The Book....
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on 16 March 2017
Prompt service and I am loving the book!
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on 15 May 2017
Enjoyed it but did ramble a bit
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on 4 June 2017
Really cheap and arrived on time.
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on 2 June 2017
Fascinating account of adapting to a very different life.
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on 3 May 2017
Great insight in to another way of life
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on 4 December 2012
I found this book very disappointing. It is a disjointed series of musings, or you could say ramblings, describing the author's life in Petra. The book was very poorly written: there is no plot, suspense-building or proper story-telling, just pages upon pages of description, which quite quickly gets pretty boring. After finishing it, I did not feel that I knew the author any better. She gave very few opinions, insights into how she was feeling, and all of her descriptions appeared to carry equal weight in importance no matter how big or small. For example, her parents visiting from New Zealand or the birth of her first child got the same amount of attention as finding describing a new car, or finding a scorpion. All described in a rather distant, bland way..

A pretty poor attempt at telling what should be an interesting story. I wouldn't recommend even if you have been to Petra and can identify with the palces mentioned. You would be wasting your time.
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Having visited Petra before the Bedouin settlements were removed I looked forward to reading `Married to a Bedouin' and identifying with an area I had found truly amazing, and I was immediately attracted to the map and landmarks I recognized - but I was disappointed at the book's lack of depth. In spite of its alluring subject matter I found `Married to a Bedouin' to be a somewhat tedious read, particularly in its use of Arabic wording. There is no doubting the strength of the bond between author Marguerite van Geldermalsen and her Bedouin husband, but most of her writing on relationships is superficial. She is very much a hippie traveller rather than a writer and her narrative is made up of anecdotal snap-shots that allow only glimpses of her time in Petra. Certainly Marguerite achieved happiness, but she avoids or downplays the negatives of what must have been unpleasant or hard. Even so there are fascinating insights to Bedouin lifestyle and culture, and of course it is a true love story, but it is only an average book - hence 3-star rating.
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on 26 March 2007
I have just visited Petra and met some of the delightful people of the bedouin tribe and our guide recommended this book. It is a thrilling, romantic tale set amongst the stunning scenery of Petra. The story is all the more remarkable because it is a true tale. Marguerite gives a fascinating insight into day to day life of the bedouin and vividly describes the remarkable surroundings. I finished the book a few days ago and was so enraptured by Marguerite that I am still wondering what happened next. Please write an up to date epilogue!
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