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Desert Royal

3.72 of 5 stars 3.72  ·  rating details  ·  915 ratings  ·  59 reviews
Unknown Binding, 224 pages
Published October 1st 2011 by Doubleday Books
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Infidel by Ayaan Hirsi AliPrincess by Jean SassonDesert Royal by Jean SassonPrincess Sultana's Daughters by Jean SassonArabian Knights - Volume1 by Aisha Bilal
Best Arab nonfiction
3rd out of 27 books — 25 voters
This is Paradise! by Hyok KangThings Latinos LOVE or HATE by Lilliana RiosA Kazakh Teacher's Story by Mukhamet ShayakhmetovDesert Royal by Jean SassonNylon Road by Parsua Bashi
Ethnic/Cultural Memoirs
4th out of 178 books — 9 voters

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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 1,496)
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My first Jean Sassoon book, and willingly, it will be the last.
A so-called true capturing of the life of Sultana a Saudi princess, Sultana tells the story of her disgust with the backwardness of Saudi men, their mistreatment of women, how women in Saudi Arabia are controlled by their male family members, and how sexual slavery in Saudi Arabia is not uncommon especially among the royal family. Although Princess Sultana herself had not been in such a position since her husband K
Woohoo! I finally made time away from the kids to read a book and I loved it. What I enjoyed about this book is it was TRUE, based on the life of PRincess Sultana of Saudi Arabia. This book allowed me to learn about other cultures and how women are treated within. I was also able to learn about the royal family of Saudi Arabia and the crazy life of extreme wealth they live, yet with all the material wealth they possess, women still have little power.
Desert Royal was a real eye opener to me of h
Ghaliya Al-Ajaji
It's such a shame reading about a dysfunctional "nuclear" family with problems like all regular normally human all over the world families and then disgrace and stamp a whole nation to be like wise. That was related to the first few chapters.

Later on.. comical, fictional and unbelievably boring. I'd say the childish book.
This is a tale of men with great wealth and power, whose morals have lowered to such an extent that they seek their pleasure at the expense of others. This is a tale of woman who, despite having the means to obtain almost anything they desire at any cost, cannot gain their ultimate desire: Freedom. This is a tale of oppression, in which women have no right to map out their own futures, but instead are married off as young girls to men twice their age and are treated with the utmost brutality. Th ...more
My 2009 bookcrossing review:

Well, I have now read the trilogy and I am glad I read her story right through. This is (obviously) a continuation from the first two books. Sultana's three children are now in their late teens, and certainly don't need their mother so much. This book is about a short period in her family's life: incidents and happenings. The international sex slavetrade also comes into this book more than I remember in the other two. And that is really grim. Rich men praying on pover
Muhammad Syed
A splendid piece of true account. The author has put forward the ill moral characters of the Saudi Men before the whole world in a candid manner.

Being a Muslim and holding great reverence for the KSA being the birth place of Prophet Muhammad PBUH, I was disgusted to learn how the men behave and their attitude towards women. Islam & Prophet Muhammad teach us to be humble towards the females and never to exercise force against them.

However, the Saudi's do behave like sex lunatics. I have heard
Faye Rahman
As I was finishing this book it saddened me that finally Princess Trilogy is ending. I read all three books in the trilogy and its a very fun read with many many amazing moments shared by Sultana with her readers. Her witty character and her high spirited heart have made the readings incredibly joyful!

Princess Sultana has open a lot of eyes and minds about the reality of women in the Middle East, although coming from a Princess's point of view, still oppressed and live under the ruling of the m
Mya Kyaw
Aug 16, 2012 Mya Kyaw rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Betty Bryant
Looking for a book about life of in Saudi Arabia's royal family? Desert Royal by Jean Sasson is a book written from Princess Sultana's point of view about their royal family which is also a sequel to The Princess trilogy. Cruelty towards women in her society forced her to fight for women rights in Saudi Arabia. This book is about both her external conflicts with people in the society and internal conflicts inside herself.
Aanchal Jairath
when i finished reading this book , i realized how little changes take a lot of effort , effort on the part of princess Sultana and the support of her sisters. Of how there are different worlds within our world , of which we have no knowledge at all .
It was an unforgettable book , an unforgettable trilogy.
Forget how annoying it feels to read about a rich woman with privileges complaining about her problems and her helplessness, when she has no discipline over herself.or seem to exert any intelligent behaviour towards the oppressed with the resources she seems to boast about...the stories are disconnected, bland and imposed to convince that there are so many sufferring coz nobody is taking an action! But they do not actually stimulate any sympathy or empathy towards these women!
I'd have given atle
Emancipation woman!!seems like a joke in this civilised modern qorld!!
Another wonderful book my Jean Sasson. You can just keep reading...
An interesting look into the more hidden aspects of Saudi society.
Lynda Atkinson
Loved it. I Could not put it down.
Pasan Rajadasa
when I was reading this a few years ago, I always felt that things are much exaggerated. So I sepent some time going through the background stories, and surprisingly, they are not that much exaggerated. The book mainly focuses on a higher class family, so the true situation of a woman in an Arabic country is left to imagination. The writer had done a poor job in planning the flow of the story, maybe because her main objective was not making a great literature work, but making it a socio cultural ...more
This book is the third in the Princess trilogy and describes many of the sexual crimes that is rampant but not openly discussed by Saudis as well as other Arabs who reside in Saudi Arabia. The truth needs to be told and heard by the rest of the world. Many of the Arabs who live in Saudi Arabia whom I have come into contact with deny that such things go on in Saudi Arabia. They are just a bunch of hypocrites.
It has been quite some time since I read the first two books of this trilogy. The life of Princess Sultana has been of interest to me the previous times. I was taken back with the revelations and the truth spoken without fear about women in Saudi Arabia. This book held quite the turmoils in it but as my mind developed greatly the past years, I had less of an interest in it as a book but greatly as a cause. There were many great moments in this book where Sultana stood up for women and even when ...more
Antara Banerjee
Continued the unbelievable life of the brave Saudi princess... it is incredible that so much wealth and power prove powerless in the face of medieval notions about women and how they should be treated... women seem to be right at the bottom of the list of animals and things for Saudi men. It is encouraging to see that courageous women like Princess Sultana and her sisters are trying to wring changes in their unbending society while constantly fearing persecution every moment by their own men. As ...more
Mar 31, 2013 Laavanya rated it 3 of 5 stars
Recommended to Laavanya by: Amrutha
The book has all the drama and emotion. A woman realizing her strengths and weaknesses. You could capture little bursts of beautiful description and metaphors; but the writing could have been better.

And then you realize all this is real. As real as it gets. And the perspectives come crashing down on you. And I'm reluctant to call it a good story/book because of this very fact.

To anyone who wants to read about a female who fights for her rights, this is a good book.
Not as good as the first book but better than the second. The princess seems to come into her own a bit more later in life after floundering a bit in the second book. I like how she (and the author) show some of the less attractive sides of her as well - makes her more believable and more realistic. Saudi Arabia is still a sad, sad place for women even after 20+ years since the events in the first book took place.
Jaz Meen
truely fascinating to know 'the inside world' of the Saudi woman esp of those the Royals. But somewhere somehow, these royal ladies do 'enjoyed their wealthy life! The Palace! huh i am really flabbergasted when reading how they did their shopping lavishly! 'Imprisoned' but wealth at every corner! SO??? The Saudi man ... speechless to say of their 'DESIRES' :(
always thankful wit my moderate life heheheee
Money...royalty and luxury is nothind when compared to freedom. This is what i felt after reading this book. Women are born to marry and reproduce.and the unbeleievable sexual desire of men in that country and their brutal behaviour towards shocking..What they lack is respect and freedom.This will change definitly..but it will akes time as the people in saudi arabia are very much fundamentalistic.
Sandrine Prevenier warrington
Another insight in the life of the Saudi Royal family, fascinating as always but found myself less sorry for the main protagonist than in previous books.
Faten Baraki
This book is an eye opener to the sauide culture, and how differently women are treated, and how they treat each other. When your own culture takes for granted it's basic human rights, it is shocking to find out that life is very different for people all over the world. The 'news' on TV doesn't do justice to what really happens to people. You have to read books to find out the truth.
I bought the box set of the three Princess books about a year ago and absolutely loved the first one. The second one was also very gripping though not as unique. However I just couldn't finish this one.

I started to find Princess Sultana's narrative quite over dramatic, I know the things she has witnessed are horrific, but after two books of it, the content became very boring.
Meh. The last book of the Princess trilogy is even more bland than the second one, with its painstaking attempts to make itself memorable.
In this book, Princess Sultana's thoughts and feelings occupy centerstage, and the relative dearth of incidents makes for a monotonous read.
I only got through this book because I wanted to finish the entire trilogy. Not a book I'd recommend.
I believe this is the second book in the series regarding Princess Sultana. I haven't read the first (Princess) but found Desert Royal a very interesting tribute to the difficulties of women in Saudi Arabai. I love women who will stand on their own and try to make a difference in their world - and what a place to have to do it - Saudi Arabia! I really enjoyed this book.
About the challenges of a strong-willed modern Saudi princess living in a male-dominated society. She struggles with alcoholism; the drink is illegal, so she cannot speak much about it. In one chapter, a eunuch tells his life story.
Had to complete the trilogy about princess sultans and her brood. More tales of oppression and abuse of women, with some scandals within the royal family. Have often wondered why the princess doesn't live abroad as she could educate her daughters and offer them a life of freedom, considering she has the wealth to do so.

As the last book of the trilogy I was expecting more change for women. I found myself thinking that Sultana was very spoiled and didn't have a clue on how to help anyone. She was better at spending money. I was surprised to find in the final chapters that a couple of people were actually helped.
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Jean Sasson was born in a small town in Alabama. An avid reader from an early age, she had read all the books in her school library by the time she was 15 years old. She also began her book collection at age 15. When given the chance to travel, Sasson accepted a position at the King Faisal Specialist Hospital and Research Centre in Riyadh, and lived in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia for 12 years. She ...more
More about Jean Sasson...
Princess: A True Story of Life Behind the Veil in Saudi Arabia Princess Sultana's Daughters Princess Sultana's Circle (Princess Trilogy) Mayada, Daughter of Iraq: One Woman's Survival Under Saddam Hussein Love in a Torn Land: Joanna of Kurdistan: The True Story of a Freedom Fighter's Escape from Iraqi Vengeance

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