Middle East

/ posted in: Reading

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All summaries from Goodreads.

Oman

The Icarus AgendaThe Icarus Agenda by Robert Ludlum
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

True story – I loved this book. I used it reread it once a year until one of my rabbits ate the binding and all the pages fell out. It was a thriller but now is old enough that it might need to be considered historical fiction.

Colorado Congressman Evan Kendrick is trying to live out his term quietly when a political mole reveals his deepest secret: Kendrick was the anonymous hero who freed the hostages held by Arab terrorists in the American embassy in Masqat, and then silently disappeared. Now, brought into the light, Kendrick is a target, pursued by the terrorists he once outwitted.

Jordan

Leap of Faith : Memoirs of an Unexpected LifeLeap of Faith : Memoirs of an Unexpected Life by Queen Noor
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Born into a distinguished Arab-American family and raised amid privilege, Lisa Halaby joined the first freshman class at Princeton to accept women, graduating in 1974 with a degree in architecture and urban planning.Two years later, while visiting her father in Jordan, she was casually introduced on the airport runway to King Hussein. Widely admired in the Arab world as a voice of moderation, and for his direct lineage to the prophet Muhammad, Hussein would soon become the world’s most eligible bachelor after the tragic death of his wife. The next time they met, Hussein would fall headlong in love with the athletic, outspoken daughter of his longtime friend. After a whirlwind, secret courtship Lisa Halaby became Noor Al Hussein, Queen of Jordan.

Saudi Arabia

Inside The Kingdom: My Life In Saudi ArabiaInside The Kingdom: My Life In Saudi Arabia by Carmen Bin Ladin
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Osama bin Laden’s former sister-in-law provides a penetrating, unusually intimate look into Saudi society and the bin Laden family’s role within it, as well as the treatment of Saudi women. On September 11th, 2001, Carmen bin Ladin heard the news that the Twin Towers had been struck. She instinctively knew that her ex-brother-in-law was involved in these horrifying acts of terrorism, and her heart went out to America. She also knew that her life and the lives of her family would never be the same again.

Israel

Lamb: The Gospel According to Biff, Christ's Childhood PalLamb: The Gospel According to Biff, Christ’s Childhood Pal by Christopher Moore
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

The birth of Jesus has been well chronicled, as have his glorious teachings, acts, and divine sacrifice after his thirtieth birthday. But no one knows about the early life of the Son of God, the missing years — except Biff, the Messiah’s best bud, who has been resurrected to tell the story in the divinely hilarious yet heartfelt work.

I also like Daniel Silva’s Gabriel Allon series.  He is an Israeli agent working undercover as an art restorer in Europe.

To Be Read List in this Region

Finding Nouf (Nayir Sharqi & Katya Hijazi #1)Finding Nouf by Zoë Ferraris

In a blazing hot desert in Saudi Arabia, a search party is dispatched to find a missing young woman. Thus begins a novel that offers rare insight into the inner workings of a country in which women must wear the abaya in public or risk denunciation by the religious police; where ancient beliefs, taboos, and customs frequently clash with a fast-moving, technology-driven modern world.