Bronwyn Mauldin's Reviews > The Map of Love

The Map of Love by Ahdaf Soueif
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's review
Feb 14, 2011

really liked it

If you've never read an Egyptian author, Ahdaf Soueif's The Map of Love is a good place to start. It's an exploration of politics and nationalism in the colonial era, wrapped in two love stories. The narrative moves easily between contemporary Egypt and British era. The historical love story is the more engaging of the two, but the contemporary story shows how the dreams and idealism of the emerging nationalist movement of the early 20th century has given way to a dictatorial regime that does real harm to its citizens.

I happened to be reading this book just as the demonstrations broke out in Egypt in January. I've seen seen an interview with Soueif as she was on the streets demonstrating for democracy. You can read her book simply for its beautiful writing and storytelling, or as an entry into understanding why Egyptians went into the streets to drive Mubarak out of office.

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