Google+ The Introverted Reader: Middle East Reading Challenge

Middle East Reading Challenge

Saturday, July 3, 2010

Middle East Reading Challenge

Helen's Book Blog is hosting a Middle East Reading Challenge from August 1, 2010 to July 31, 2010. This is about as low-pressure as you can get. Just read the number of books you want during that time frame. There's no set number of books, just a desire to learn more about a part of the world that gets such an all-around bad rap in the news.

For books to count for the challenge, Helen says, "The author of the book may be from the countries listed below or the book can be set in one of the countries included in this challenge. Fiction, non-fiction, YA and Adult lit, graphic novels, audio books, books for other challenge... they all count."

The countries Helen has chosen to define as "the Middle East" are:

Saudi Arabia
United Arab Emirates

You can see her reasons for choosing these countries and an excellent list of suggested books and authors on the Challenge sign-up page.

I don't know how many or which books I'll read.  Here are a few that are already on my to-read list, so there's a good chance I'll get to some of these.   There's no way I'll make time to read all of them.

Day After Night by Anita Diamant
Rooftops of Tehran by Mahbod Seraji
The Blood of Flowers by Anita Amirrezvani
A Woman in Jerusalem by A.B. Yehoshua
Mirrors of the Unseen: Journeys in Iran by Jason Elliot
Anahita's Woven Riddle by Meghan Nuttall Sayres
Mornings in Jenin by Susan Abulhawa
Embroideries by Marjane Satrapi
The Translator by Leila Aboulela
Nine Parts of Desire: The Hidden World of Islamic Women by Geraldine Brooks
Dawn by Elie Wiesel
Iran Awakening: A Memoir of Revolution and Hope by Shirin Ebadi

If you're interested in this challenge, make sure to go sign up at  Helen's Book Blog. Even if you just read one book set in the Middle East, it's something!

Books read for the challenge:
  1. Shadow of the Swords by Kamran Pasha
  2. Rooftops of Tehran by Mahbod Seraji
  3. Embroideries by Marjane Satrapi
Comments turned off due to the insanely dedicated spammer who loves this post. Thanks a lot, jackass.


  1. You've some interesting books lined up for the challenge :) I've read The Translator and thought it was excellent but didn't enjoy Mornings in Jenin - too much tell and not enough show.

  2. I can't wait to sign up! Let me look through my book list!

  3. This challenge sounds amazing. It's great that you're participating and I'll be looking forward to reviews of those books. I am really tempted to sign up myself. If I can make some time, I will, otherwise, I'll put some of those books on my TBR list for later. Happy reading!

  4. I love books set in the area of the world. I'd love to join but since I just failed at one challenge, I probably shouldn't sign on for another. "Rooftops of Tehran" is wonderful!

  5. I am so glad you've signed up for the challenge! I look forward to your reviews and will add some of your books to the "official" challenge book list.

  6. What an awesome challenge! And just what I need, more books to add to the stack. I don't think I'll be joining but I will be enjoying the reviews :)

  7. This one that I should probably join. I would love to know more about the Middle East and need to have a better working knowledge of current literature from that region. Thanks for the inspiration!

  8. I joined the challenge too :) I also need to read Rooftops of Tehran and Anahita's Woven Riddle. I look forward to reading your reviews.



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