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The Sheltered Quarter: A Tale of a Boyhood in Mecca
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The Sheltered Quarter: A Tale of a Boyhood in Mecca

3.62  ·  Rating Details ·  29 Ratings  ·  5 Reviews
Hamza Bogary describes a bygone way of life that has now irreversibly disappeared. He speaks of life in Mecca before the advent of oil. Only partly autobiographical, the memoir is nevertheless rich in remembered detail based on Bogary's early observations of life in Mecca. He has transformed his knowledge into art through his sense of humor, empathy, and remarkable underst ...more
Paperback, 141 pages
Published January 1st 1991 by University of Texas Press (first published 1983)
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Kate
Sep 18, 2015 Kate rated it really liked it
I thoroughly enjoyed this coming of age 'novel'. Written in first person, the book sounds more like a memoir. It's the story of a young man growing up in Mecca, living alone with his mother, going to school and eventually becoming a teacher. His mother dies which causes him to have a breakdown and it ends quite soon after that. It's hard to place it in time. According to Wikipedia, it takes place in pre-oil times but towards the end, it refers to computer keys (p. 103, "Just as one presses a com ...more
Shahenaz Akemi
Jan 16, 2011 Shahenaz Akemi rated it really liked it
Shelves: favorites
A great story about old life style in Mecca... only the end I didnt like.
Julie
This book is an evocation of a way of life, a caste of lovable characters, who have been forever obliterated by the coming of oil wealth to Saudi and in particular Mecca. A Tale of Boyhood in Mecca. The characters are by turns naive, hilarious and totally human.

Originally published as Saqifa't al Safa (1983 Riyadh)
Jayme
Nov 21, 2012 Jayme rated it really liked it


A very cute book with incorporates traditional Meccan traditions with and humour from Muhaisin himself. I was so happy for him that he marries Jameela, I had a feeling in my gut he would. The death of his mother was abrupt and shows how life can take turns in all different directions
maryam
Feb 13, 2012 maryam rated it liked it
The first book and autobiography I've read by an Arab writer about daily life in Saudi Arabia.The time is not very recent. It is one the first autob. in the Arab world. I enjoyed reading it.
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