Kelly Hager's Reviews > Late for Tea at the Deer Palace: The Lost Dreams of My Iraqi Family

Late for Tea at the Deer Palace by Tamara Chalabi
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's review
Jan 09, 2011

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Read from January 09 to 10, 2011

I really enjoyed reading this book, which is a history of Iraq and, more specifically, one specific family through the generations. I always find that I prefer reading about history when the history of a land or time is mixed with the history of people. (For example, Gone With the Wind.)

The Chalabis were an influential family in Iraq until the late 1950s, when they had to go into exile. For Tamara, it's also about reconciling the Iraq she knows from her family's stories and the Iraq she sees on TV. Possibly the most powerful part is where she's at a gathering and someone sings a song her grandmother used to sing and she starts to cry. But how can you be homesick for a place that isn't actually your home?

(But you can be.)

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