Susan's Reviews > The Ruins of Us

The Ruins of Us by Keija Parssinen
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's review
Apr 03, 2012

really liked it
Read from April 03 to 08, 2012

Rosalie, an American, has spent much of her life in Saudi Arabia. As a child, her father was employed by an oil company and when she attended college in the US she fell in love with Abdullah, a Saudi Arabian student. Against the protests of both families they wed and take up life in the Kingdom. Rosalie knows her American views and values take a back seat when living in the Kingdom and she becomes a fairly typical and subservient Saudi wife. They have been married 27 years, have two children and enjoy a lavish lifestyle. During a shopping trip with her daughter, Rosalie is asked by a jeweler if she liked the onyx pendant Abdullah purchased for their anniversary. An astounded Rosalie, who dislikes onyx, confronts her husband and learns that two years prior, he had taken a second wife. Thus starts the real drama of this story and we feel the full fury of Rosalie's pain, the emotional turmoil of their children and the seemingly out of touch behavior of the husband. The author (an American who also lived many years in the Kingdom) writes "this timely story of intolerance, family and the injustices we endure for love."

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