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The Woman from Tantoura

4.31  ·  Rating details ·  19,276 ratings  ·  3,463 reviews
Palestine. For most of us, the word brings to mind a series of confused images and disjointed associations-massacres, refugee camps, UN resolutions, settlements, terrorist attacks, war, occupation, checkered kouffiyehs and suicide bombers, a seemingly endless cycle of death and destruction. This novel does not shy away from such painful images, but it is first and foremost ...more
Paperback, 368 pages
Published June 15th 2014 by American University in Cairo Press (first published 2010)
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Medo Hassan رواية رائعة تؤثر فيك ثرية بالمعلومات التاريخية عن فلسطين واهلها وعن مجازر الصهاينة فى فلسطين ولبنان عندما تتحدث عن معاناه اللاجئين وعن تفرق الاسرة بعد…moreرواية رائعة تؤثر فيك ثرية بالمعلومات التاريخية عن فلسطين واهلها وعن مجازر الصهاينة فى فلسطين ولبنان عندما تتحدث عن معاناه اللاجئين وعن تفرق الاسرة بعد اجتياح اسرائيل للبنان 1982 من اكثر اسطرها تأثيرا بالنسبة لى عندما رأت الجدة حفيدتها لأول مرة من خلف الاسلاك الشائكة التى تفصل بين فلسطين وجنوب لبنان (less)

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4.31  · 
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 ·  19,276 ratings  ·  3,463 reviews

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This narrative opens with a gloriously ambiguous, searingly romantic image that heralds a lyrical portrait of life in the narrator's idyllic home town on the Palestinian coast. The seeds of a story are sown and I joyfully anticipate a woman-centred tale of love, tradition and modernity set in this paradise and told in the voice of a poet. By whetting our appetite for this tale, by showing that it would be worth the telling as well as worth the living, Ashour imparts bitter anguish and loss when ...more
No one undoes their weaving even if it looks that way. No one is frozen in the act of waiting.
Once upon a time, I called the vein of literature I am most likely going to be found trawling in escapist. It's taken me many a book and many a bookish aftermath to realize that reading which entrenches one even further into the slaughtering mandated and maintained by a hegemonic reality is not an escape. A more accurate term would be recentering literature, two pages in landing you in a place whose n
Jul 20, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
finished it at 6 am!
Finished reading it in three days!
It's a book you cannot feel but missing it when you turn the last page!

"El Tantoria" is a memory between your hands, a full history, abundance of names and incidents that carve their ways into your memory as well, and you cannot feel but you're part of this collective memory! Rdwa Ashour has narrated, and gave your the burden - the happy burden - the responsibility of carrying these stories - and thus this history and memory- along in your li
ReemK10 (Paper Pills)
Dec 26, 2014 rated it it was amazing
As a review, I offer this thread from The Year of Reading Women -2015

Click here: 2015: The Year of Reading Women - A's: Radwa Ashour

My deepest thanks and gratitude to Zanna, Ce Ce, Kalliope, Laima, Marcelita and Sue for being a part of this read!!

For the links that did not go through because of connection problems:

That is a really good
Hussein Magdy
Apr 21, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Awesome, almost cried when I finished it.
Sara Salem
Jan 30, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Beautiful and painful.
Paniz K
Nov 01, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2017, favourites
Granted I haven't read many books since I started university (trying to change that this year) but no book has quite touched my heart so deeply as this book since I read Revolutionary Road when I was 17. What a beautiful, charming, melancholic treasure.
أنس خالد
Ahmed Khaled
Oct 20, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
i enjoyed the book as usual radwa ashour make me fall in love with history specially after describing it in dramatic way :)
Zeinab Gamal
Feb 06, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Very simple. Just very simple and pure.
Dec 01, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Recommended to Livia by: Ahmed Elsherbiny
This book has taken me aback and its story has stuck so deep in my mind, that led me to an obsessive search for people, and places and dates. I ended up finding an interesting (and infuriating) story about an academic whose masters thesis was rejected because he dared to tell the Tantoura's massacre story, Teddy Katz (more about it here).
I've been looking for remains of Tantoura on Google Maps, and the little I've found makes me think how successful Israel has been on covering it's army's war c
May 29, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Every aspect of the Palestinian experience is tragic, and that tragedy seeps through the pores of everyday life. Through the story of Ruqqaya and her family, we find that no matter how far up or away one climbs, she becomes inexplicably rooted to the memory of home, belonging, and the dream of return. Memory is has played the most powerful defense against the active and constant attempt to annihilate Palestine. The way memory is explored in this novel is wonderful.
The melancholic idea of how ch
Mariam Mamdouh
Aug 03, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
4.5 stars
May 17, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
When a book is this breathtaking in English translation, I long to be able to read it in its original language. In reminded me of Elias Khoury’s masterpiece, Gate of the Sun, in that I didn’t want to put it down, yet at the same time, I wanted to hold on to and sit with every sentence. Ruqayya - my heart ached when you took off the key and put it in your granddaughter.
Ayala Levinger
Mar 29, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Ruqayya was 14 years old when she and her family were forced to leave Palestine on the night of the massacre of Tantoura, a village on the Paelstinian coast with its natural wave breaking islands.
This same beach was a favorite vacation resort for my family when I was groing up and and none of us bothered to learn the history of the village that was destoyed by zionist forces 27,5 years before I was born, when nobody of my family was even considering immigrating to Palestine.

Told in the first p
Apr 26, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
How many times have words failed to describe what goes on in our minds? Definitely this is one of them, because the uniqueness of this novel makes reviewing it a delicate task: what to praise and underline and what to leave to the reader to discover? Talk about the story line, the historic and historical figures, events, and details it describes, the seamlessly flowing narration, the depth and insight it delivers, the truths it reveals...etc.

AlTantoureyyah is the story of Palestine over the past
What a book and What a history ?!!!
Being homeless is painful .. But being homeless in your home is way too more than just painful .. It has all the meanings of humiliation and injustice.

This book took me to a very long period over the history since 1936 till 2000 .. Made me start from the very beginning with the Palestinians' misery of losing their country and living all their lives as fugitives.

This book took me to this ugly and human-less massacres in Palestine and Lebanon and how frightful t
Fatma Salim
Feb 10, 2016 rated it it was amazing
"Amin went to sleep, but I was between sleep and waking all night long. I felt him leave the bed, so I got up. I looked at my watch and it was near to six. He ate a hurried breakfast and kissed Maryam's forehead and his mother's, as they were both deeply asleep. He said as he was taking leave of me at the door, "I don't think that there will be anymore shelling. I'll be home in the evening."

This book follows the life story of Ruqayya, a woman from the Palestinian village of Tantoura. Tantoura be
Dec 12, 2014 rated it really liked it
This is a deeply personal historical novel. Though written by the Egyptian author, Radwa Ashour, it takes place in Palestine, starting in 1948 and ending in the 21st century. The main character, a woman from Tantoura, tells the story of her life, of the forced leaving of her family from her village during the Nakba, and the subsequent six homes she lives in in Palestine, Lebanon, UAE, Egypt, finally, in the last chapter returning to Palestine. Because it is written in the first person, and descr ...more
Passant Lotfy
Feb 12, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I'm short on words to describe this.. Amazingly beautiful.
This book made me feel everything, absolute joy, absolute sadness, it made my eyes tear up multiple times.
I fell in love with Palestinians.
Radwa Ashour did an excellent job with this book, I had to check the cover every once in a while to make sure that she's actually Egyptian not Palestinian.
Hats off to Radwa Ashour, I'm looking forward to read her other books.
Nouran Attia
Jun 16, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favourites
The events are eye-openning and heart-breaking. The story is beautifully woven and written, but I ocassionaly got lost in all that is happening, going back and forth in the timeline, it was a little confusing and sometimes discouraging, despite that, I enjoyed it, enjoyed watching the characters, the differences between them, but wanted to know more about their lives, how they felt, wanted to get lost in their thoughts as I got lost in RoQaya's head.
Leena ElDeeb
Feb 14, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: عربي
It feels like Rouqaya took me with her to all the places she traveled to! It's no رواية, it's history written through a simple old woman's eyes, heart and mind. Historians could have never covered a big event like Al Nakba so thoroughly like Rouqaya did. However, I would love to hear the opinion of an actual Palestinian who lived through all of the events I read about in الطنطورية.
Nermien Reda
Dec 11, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
when a book make you smile, cry and laugh then it's defiantly a great book :)
the most perfect novel i've read in my whole entire life
Jan 12, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The Arabic translated edition of "The scar of David", only the euphorically refrained language employed by Ashour makes it a top notch.
Mar 18, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Amazing Book...I became addicted and It took me around two whole days to read it...
Jul 27, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Probably one of the best books i have ever read. To say it is Life-changing would be an understatement.
Jul 23, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The writer has a great ability to pass on her feelings to the reader. it inspired me to read more about the history of Palestine. Long live Palestine and long live its martyrs.
Noor Saadeh
Oct 18, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Where oh where do I start with this book? Typically the media image of the Palestinian woman is the peasant/farmer/villager, screaming, pulling her hair, holding an injured or dead child toward the camera with the question "why". This author writes a work that you just have to put down once in awhile, either to let a passage sink in just for it's beauty - and mind you this is a translation! - and other times when the enormity of what happened/s to Palestinians sinks in. Married to a Palestinian ...more
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Radwa Ashour (Arabic: رضوى عاشور) was an Egyptian writer and scholar.
Ashour had published 7 novels, an autobiographical work, 2 collections of short stories and 5 criticism books. Part I of her Granada Trilogy won the Cairo International Book Fair “1994 Book of the Year Award.” The Trilogy won the First Prize of the First Arab Woman Book Fair (Cairo, Nov. 1995). The Granada Trilogy was translate
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