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In the Language of Miracles: A Novel por…
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In the Language of Miracles: A Novel (original 2015; edición 2015)

por Rajia Hassib (Autor)

MiembrosReseñasPopularidadValoración promediaMenciones
12811173,083 (3.88)5
The affluent Al-Menshawy family find their American dream shattered when a devastating turn of events leaves their eldest son and their neighbor's daughter dead, and, becoming pariahs in their upscale New Jersey community, they struggle to keep their family together.
Miembro:CareBear36
Título:In the Language of Miracles: A Novel
Autores:Rajia Hassib (Autor)
Info:Viking (2015), 288 pages
Colecciones:Tu biblioteca
Valoración:***
Etiquetas:Ninguno

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In the Language of Miracles: A Novel por Rajia Hassib (2015)

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Mostrando 1-5 de 11 (siguiente | mostrar todos)
The older I get, the more novels about families speak to me. I think it's the realization that comes with age that every family is broken - every family imperfect in some way - that makes me gravitate toward novels that show those damaged families still struggling to live and love and remain together.

The Al-Menshawy family is certainly damaged, and the novel opens at the one-year anniversary of the tragic events that turned their lives upside down. As the reader peels back the layers of this family, we see the ways in which each member carries responsibility for the tragedy, and how they push each other away while simultaneously reaching out for help.

I found myself fully engaged from the very first pages. Will definitely look for more from this author. ( )
  NeedMoreShelves | Jun 1, 2020 |
I received an advance uncorrected proof of this book through Goodreads in exchange for an honest view.

This is a beautifully written book. The author has a true talent for detailed descriptions.

I really enjoyed the multiple perspectives shown in the narrative as the reader explores how a tragic event effects the various family members.

The reason I gave this book three starts is because, plot-wise, the story is slow and not much happens. This is more of a book about personal growth rather than one with an active plot.

However, it was still well written and really delves into the psychology of humans and how each person learns to live in the world, which has always fascinated me. The ties to religion and culture and how multiple cultures intersect was very interesting.

Overall, a good read. ( )
  CareBear36 | Jan 16, 2016 |
Samir and Nagla Al-Menshawy immigrated to the United States from their home in Egypt in search of the American dream. It wasn't always easy, but in suburban Summerset, New Jersey, they thought they had found it. Samir's medical practice was successful, the couple found fast friends in the family next door, and their children were growing up knowing the luxuries of American life. But, when a heinous crime is committed by their oldest son, Hossam, the family is plunged into grief and the community they once felt a valuable part of turns forcefully against them. In the Language of Miracles is the story of the Al-Menshawy family's struggles in the aftermath of their tragic awakening from the American dream that should have been their reality.

In the Language of Miracles is a story of faith and community: having it, finding it, losing it. Mother Nagla struggles with her loss of faith in face of tragedy, her inability to match the piety of her mother and her best friend that increases her fear that it was a shortfall in herself that caused tragedy to befall her family. Grandmother Ehsan is steeped in faith, perpetually murmuring prayers and waving incense, providing holy water for healing. Her faith imbues her every action and is so genuine that it can tear down cultural walls but can't rescue her daughter's family from their grief and struggle. Daughter Fatima is seeking her own path to faith, uncertain of whether to pursue her family's more Americanized ways or don the headscarves of her more religious friends. Son Khaled is a different story completely. Caught between the shame and treachery brought on by his brother's act and the expectations of a father whose hopes are now pinned upon him alone, Khaled takes refuge in studying monarch butterflies, how they migrate thousands of miles south to winter only to have a new generation of butterflies return north - a practice that seems to have parallels even in his own family.

Each of Hassib's characters is fleshed out and fully realized, from Khaled who is coming of age in the shadow of tragedy to his father, whose stubbornness makes him easy for readers to dislike, but his ultimate wish and goal to preserve the life and community he had striven so hard to attain, is ultimately sympathetic. I wished for an ending that offered a bit more closure, but that should take nothing away from this book that seems in every way to be an authentic exploration of the immigrant experience, an honest portrayal of the Muslim faith, and a compelling picture of a broken family knitting themselves back together after tragedy. ( )
  yourotherleft | Jan 3, 2016 |
There is much to like about the authors writing and this story. She touched on many things that are difficult, such as the way Muslims are treated in this country, grief and mental illness. I appreciated the way these issues were perceived by some of the family members and how it affected their individual lives.

Most touching to me was how the grandmother was an integral part of the story and an integral part of the culture. It was a pleasure to know how much Khaled and his sister loved her, that is what made the story so endearing to me.

I am always disgusted and disheartened when I am in the grips of a book and then I read "sit Indian-style." Maybe the author was not referring to the stereotype that plagues the Indigenous people of America but the term that represents sitting in the Lotus Position from India. Being that she is from Egypt I will assume the latter. (maybe the term is offensive to the latter also?) ( )
  Jolynne | Nov 8, 2015 |
Very well written. Excellent at gradually building tension. Found the ending somewhat disappointing, although it was probably more realistic than where I thought it might be going. I enjoy reading about other cultures,religions etc but found the discussions about faith in this book became tiresome. I would like to have read more about the family before the tragedy occured, more of a chronological story. Left with too many questions about Hossam. Slow family drama well worth reading. I would give this author another try. ( )
  flippinpages | Oct 6, 2015 |
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When Khaled fell sick at age nine, his grandmother descended on his parents' house and promised him healing.
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The affluent Al-Menshawy family find their American dream shattered when a devastating turn of events leaves their eldest son and their neighbor's daughter dead, and, becoming pariahs in their upscale New Jersey community, they struggle to keep their family together.

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