Feb. 4th, 2011

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Books 1-10.
11. The Imago Sequence and Other Stories by Laird Barron.
12. The Price of Salt by Patricia Highsmith writing as Claire Morgan.

13. Surviving the Siege of Beirut: A Personal Account by Lina Mikdadi. Amazon link this time because this book is hard to find; I had to order my copy used from the UK, and had honestly forgotten about it by the time it arrived. The author also wrote an account of the Lebanese Civil War that was published a few years before this book; I haven't been able to find anything about her fate since these books were written, but she is (or was) half-Palestinian and half-Lebanese, and at the time of the Israeli "Operation Peace for Galilee"--which this book centers on--she was living in West Beirut, having gone through a divorce and an affair with a married man. The book chronicles her struggles to live a normal life amid the falling bombs and the various armies and factions surrounding the city; she tries to keep her two daughters safe and happy, deals with a lack of water and electricity, and bears witness to some horrifying violence, primarily from the constant aerial bombardments designed to drive the PLO and its allies from the city. Not a great deal of political and historical context is provided (though, to be fair, I'm not sure that a straight-line narrative of that period is even possible), and the names of the various power players in the region are thrown around in a way that's rather confusing 30 years down the line and thousands of miles away, but my purpose in reading the book was mostly to get a feel for everyday life during the siege, and this does that.


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April 2011

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