I wish I was into the World Cup.Â Everyone is so excited on Twitter.Â It seems like the Olympics and I like that.Â But, I don’t even know where to watch any World Cup games.Â I’m such an uncultured American sometimes.
I can get excited about the World Cup Book Tag that I saw on ZeZee with BooksÂ though.Â It originated at The Humpo Show.
Here are the rules:
- Pick ONE country from each group!
- Your choice can either be an AUTHOR or a BOOK set in that country.
- If you are struggling, you can pick a book or author you want to read at some point.
- Iâ€™ve included a little bit of information about the book, but you can anything you like â€” post photos of the cover, favourite quotes, go crazy!
- TAG AS MANY PEOPLE AS YOU WANT!
“When sixteen-year-old Nouf goes missing, along with a truck and her favorite camel, her prominent family calls on Nayir al-Sharqi, a desert guide, to lead a search party. Ten days later, just as Nayir is about to give up in frustration, her body is discovered by anonymous desert travelers. But when the coronerâ€™s office determines that Nouf died not of dehydration but from drowning, and her family seems suspiciously uninterested in getting at the truth, Nayir takes it upon himself to find out what really happened to her.
This mission will push gentle, hulking, pious Nayir, a Palestinian orphan raised by his bachelor uncle, to delve into the secret life of a rich, protected teenage girl — in one of the most rigidly gender-segregated of Middle Eastern societies. Initially horrified at the idea of a woman bold enough to bare her face and to work in public, Nayir soon realizes that if he wants to gain access to the hidden world of women, he will have to join forces with Katya Hijazi, a lab worker at the coronerâ€™s office. Their partnership challenges Nayir, bringing him face to face with his desire for female companionship and the limitations imposed by his beliefs.”
Extra credit nonfiction for Egypt
Headscarves and Hymens: Why the Middle East Needs a Sexual Revolution by Mona Eltahawy
“Drawing on her years as a campaigner and commentator on womens issues in the Middle East, she explains that since the Arab Spring began, women in the Arab world have had two revolutions to undertake one fought with men against oppressive regimes, and another fought against an entire political and economic system that treats women in countries from Yemen and Saudi Arabia to Egypt, Tunisia, and Libya as second-class citizens. Eltahawy has traveled across the Middle East and North Africa, meeting with women and listening to their stories. Her book is a plea for outrage and action on their behalf, confronting the toxic mix of culture and religion that few seem willing or able to disentangle lest they blaspheme or offend. A manifesto motivated by hope and fury in equal measure, Headscarves and Hymens is as illuminating as it is incendiary.”
Revolution for Dummies by Bassem Youssef
“Bassem Youssefâ€™s incendiary satirical news program, Al-Bernameg (The Program), chronicled the events of the 2011 Egyptian Revolution, the fall of President Hosni Mubarak, and the rise of Mubarakâ€™s successor, Mohamed Morsi. Youssef not only captured his nationâ€™s dissent but stamped it with his own brand of humorous political criticism, in which the Egyptian government became the prime laughing stock.
So potent were Youssefâ€™s skits, jokes, and commentary, the authoritarian government accused him of insulting the Egyptian presidency and Islam. After a six-hour long police interrogation, Youssef was released. While his case was eventually dismissed, his television show was terminated, and Youssef, fearful for his safety, fled his homeland.”
The Saffron Kitchen by Yasmin Crowther
“The story begins on a blustery day in London, when Maryam Mazarâ€™s dark secrets and troubled past surface violently with tragic consequences for her pregnant daughter, Sara. Burdened by guilt, Maryam leaves her comfortable English home for the remote village in Iran where she was raised and disowned by her father. When Sara decides to follow her she learns the price that her mother had to pay for her freedom and of the love she left behind.”
The Sweet Life in Paris: Delicious Adventures in the World’s Most Glorious – and Perplexing – City by David Lebovitz
“Like so many others, David Lebovitz dreamed about living in Paris ever since he first visited the city in the 1980s. Finally, after a nearly two-decade career as a pastry chef and cookbook author, he moved to Paris to start a new life. Having crammed all his worldly belongings into three suitcases, he arrived, hopes high, at his new apartment in the lively Bastille neighborhood.
But he soon discovered it’s a different world en France.
From learning the ironclad rules of social conduct to the mysteries of men’s footwear, from shopkeepers who work so hard not to sell you anything to the etiquette of working the right way around the cheese plate, here is David’s story of how he came to fall in love withâ€”and even understandâ€”this glorious, yet sometimes maddening, city.”
“When a massive object crashes into the ocean off the coast of Lagos, Nigeriaâ€™s most populous and legendary city, three people wandering along Bar Beach (Adaora, the marine biologist- Anthony, the rapper famous throughout Africa- Agu, the troubled soldier) find themselves running a race against time to save the country they love and the world itselfâ€¦ from itself.
Told from multiple points of view and crisscrossing narratives, combining everything from superhero comics to Nigerian mythology to tie together a story about a city consuming itself.”
Brazillionaires: Chasing Dreams of Wealth in an American Country by Alex Cuadros
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
“When Bloomberg News invited the young American journalist Alex Cuadros to report on Brazil’s emerging class of billionaires at the height of the historic Brazilian boom, he was poised to cover two of the biggest business stories of our time: how the giants of the developing world were triumphantly taking their place at the center of global capitalism, and how wealth inequality was changing societies everywhere. Eike Batista, a flamboyant and charismatic evangelist for the country’s new gospel of wealth, epitomized much of this rarefied sphere: In 2012, Batista ranked as the eighth-richest person in the world, was famous for his marriage to a beauty queen, and was a fixture in the Brazilian press. His constantly repeated ambition was to become the world’s richest man and to bring Brazil along with him to the top. But by 2015, Batista was bankrupt, his son Thor had been indicted for manslaughter, and Brazil its president facing impeachment, its provinces combating an epidemic, and its business and political class torn apart by scandal had become a cautionary tale of a country run aground by its elites, a tale with ominous echoes around the world.”
My Grandfather Would Have Shot Me: A Black Woman Discovers Her Family’s Nazi Past by Jennifer Teege
“Teege is 38â€”married, with two small childrenâ€”when by chance she finds a library book about her grandfather, Amon Goeth. Millions of people worldwide know of him through Ralph Fiennesâ€™ chilling portrayal in Steven Spielbergâ€™s film Schindlerâ€™s List. Goeth was the brutal commandant of the PlaszÃ³w concentration campâ€”Oskar Schindlerâ€™s drinking buddy, and yet his adversary. Responsible for the deaths of thousands, Amon Goeth was hanged in 1946.
Goethâ€™s partner Ruth, Teegeâ€™s much-loved grandmother, committed suicide in 1983. Teege is their daughterâ€™s daughter; her father is Nigerian. Raised by foster parents, she grew up with no knowledge of the family secret. Now, it unsettles her profoundly. What can she say to her Jewish friends, or to her own children? Who is sheâ€”truly?
My Grandfather Would Have Shot Me is Teegeâ€™s searing chronicle of grappling with her haunted past. Her research into her family takes her to Poland and to Israel. Award-winning journalist Nikola Sellmair supplies historical context in a separate, interwoven narrative. Step by step, horrified by her familyâ€™s dark history, Teege builds the story of her own liberation.”
The Wonder Trail: True Stories from Los Angeles to the End of the World by Steve Hely
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
“Steve Hely, writer for The Office and American Dad!, and recipient of the Thurber Prize for American Humor, presents a travel book about his journey through Central and South America. Part travel book, part pop history, part comic memoir, Hely’s writing will make readers want to reach for their backpack and hiking boots.The Wonder Trail is the story of Steve’s trip from Los Angeles to the bottom of South America, presented in 102 short chapters. The trip was ambitious – Steve traveled through Mexico City, ancient Mayan ruins, the jungles and coffee plantations and remote beaches of Central America, across the Panama Canal, by sea to Colombia, to the wild Easter celebration of PopayÃ¡n, to the Amazon rainforest, the Inca sites of Cuzco and Machu Picchu, to the GalÃ¡pagos Islands, the Atacama Desert of Chile, and down to the jagged and wind-worn land of Patagonia at the very end of the Western Hemisphere.
Obviously this one covers a lot of ground but when I think of it I think of the Panama Canal section.
Winter Journey by Diane Armstrong
“When forensic dentist Halina Shore arrives in Nowa Kalwaria to take part in a war crimes investigation, she finds herself at the centre of a bitter struggle in a community that has been divided by a grim legacy. What she does not realise is that she has also embarked on a confronting personal journey.
Inspired by a true incident that took place in Poland in 1941, Diane Armstrong’s powerful novel is part mystery, part forensic investigation, and a moving and confronting story of love, loss and sacrifice.”
Extra credit poetry
Map: Collected and Last Poems by WisÅ‚awa Szymborska
“One of Europeâ€™s greatest recent poets is also its wisest, wittiest, and most accessible. Nobel Prizeâ€“winner Wislawa Szymborska draws us in with her unexpected, unassuming humor. Her elegant, precise poems pose questions we never thought to ask. â€œIf you want the world in a nutshell,â€ a Polish critic remarks, â€œtry Szymborska.”
Thanks for joining in!
You’ve read such a good blend of books 🙂 The book for Panama sounds so interesting!!