In August, 2005, as Hurricane Katrina blew in, the city of New Orleans had been abandoned by most citizens. But resident Abdulrahman Zeitoun, though his wife and family had gone, refused to leave. For days he traversed an apocalyptic landscape of flooded streets by canoe. He protected neighbours' properties, fed trapped dogs and rescued survivors. But eventually he came to...more
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But now I'm old! So let's talk about it. Is it because he's popular? He's not, ac ...more
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Eggers at his very best. What he manages to do here (a lesson learned from the backlash against ...more
― Dave Eggers, Zeitoun
There is something bold and yet quiet about 'Zeitoun' the book and Zeitoun the man. There is also something bold about Dave Eggers. I don't always like the flashier parts of Eggers. The sparkle and the shake of 'A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius' or the fur-covered binding of 'The Wild Things' didn't really capture me like they did some. But after reading 'A Hologram for the King' I've sta ...more
I'm on Amtrak today, on the first of a three-day trip to New Orleans. I checked five books out of the library just before leaving, then pondered and left two of them at home. This morning I started in on Zeitoun, and this evening I finished it. Maybe I should have brought more than three books? (I also listened to many hours of podcasts when I decided the scenery was nice enough that I didn't want to be reading — it turns out train trips are a great way of catch ...more
This narrative non-fiction book chronicles the story of Abdul Zeitoun in the days before and weeks after Katrina. Zeitoun is a Syrian immigrant who ultimately settles in New Orleans, becomes an American citizen, and builds a successful painting/property ownership business.
As Katrina prepares to make landfall, Zeitoun's wif ...more
The Dangers of Hatred and Bigotry
Dave Eggers tells the astonishing and sad story of how the basest of evil in the human condition tends to rise in times of turmoil. It struck me though how this 2009 book is just as relevant today, probably even moreso given the hate-filled rhetoric of one candidate for U.S. President who would have proposed that we not only lock up Mr. Zeitoun,* a Syrian-born New Orleans small business operator since 1988, and a naturalized ...more
depicts human rights crises around the world through the stories of the men and women who experience them.
And in Zeitoun we get an intensely personal story cast as a morality play not only about Hurricane Katrina, but 9/11 to boot!
But what to make of a morality play where the protagonist attacks his wife with a tire iron and then gets arrested for three counts of attempted murder? Does oops cut it?
The world is a mes ...more
After finishing the book, I had to push my heart back down my throat. I had mini-nightmares about what I had read. I took a deep breath and made a note of buying a copy for a close friend's upcoming birthday. And, as with all books I love, I searched for online reviews and varying opinions, and stumbled upon the real-life murder charges brought against Zeitoun this past fall:
This is a true story of what happened to one family in Post-Katrina New Orleans.
Kathy and Abdulrahman Zeitoun own and operate a contracting firm specializing in remodeling and refurbishing homes. In August 2005 as Hurricane Katrina heads for New Orleans, Kathy flees the city with their four young children, eventually winding up with friends in Phoenix. Abdulrahman (commonly known by his last name, Zeitoun) remains behind to watch over their properties. Aft ...more
Some of the most emotionally r ...more
Anyway, about a month ago, a friend was reading Zeitoun and finished it in about a day, then lent it to another friend ...more
The others were Heartbreaking Work and What is the What, and all of them have been about things that are true.
Zeitoun is fuckin' horrifying. It's about a Syrian emigrant to the US who chooses to stay in New Orleans during Katrina due to reasons that make perfect sense. He's equipped to stay, he has properties to watch out for, he's resourceful: he's actually the right guy to stay. He's an asset to t ...more
It will break your heart. it will make you mad as hell all over again with the slimy Bush administration and the excesses which they engaged in. But neither is a reason not to read it.
I cannot rec ...more
You may have an opinion about Dave Eggers, or his publishing company, McSweeney's. You m ...more
Fred (Fuad) was the smooth talking cousin and business partners of the hero of this (supposedly nonfiction) story. Fred has more convictions for fraud and identity ...more
And it WAS interesting - interesting, intriguing, shocking and horrifying, by the end. The first half made me rather annoyed with Zeitoun. He seemed to embody my mental image of someone who would stay in a city in the middle of a Category 5 hurricane: arrogant, convinced that the danger ...more
Still, my friends would ask, so what if I hated that ...more
|Play Book Tag: Zeitoun - Dave Eggers - 4 stars||1||9||Jun 14, 2016 08:25PM|
|Play Book Tag: Zeitoun / Dave Eggers - 5*****||4||13||May 13, 2016 07:09AM|
|Nonfiction Naviga...: Hurricane Katrina Survival Story||1||1||Dec 03, 2015 06:57AM|
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