Killing Yourself to Write

By Michael Teague

La Confession Negative (The Negative Confession)
By Richard Millet
Gallimard, 2009, France

Richard Millet’s recent work “La Confession Negative” is a harrowing tale based on the author’s participation in the Lebanese civil war in 1976. Residing in a grey area between memoir and novel, the book’s central theme is Millet’s becoming an author through the experience of war. Millet has previously written of this experience, albeit in a more roundabout fashion, in his first novel, “Sur un Balcon a Beyrouth.”

Twelve Tales of Trial and Tribulation

By Lynne Rogers

Master of the Eclipse
By Etel Adnan
Interlink Pub Group, 2009.

With her youthful publication of the seminal novel, “Sitt Marie Rose,” the Lebanese-American writer and artist, Etel Adnan, set some very high aesthetic standards for her work. Now, her new collection of stories attests to her enduring power to defy boundaries and to engage her readers. Her title story, “Master of the Eclipse,” pays tribute to the deceased modern Iraqi Kurdish poet, Buland al-Haidari.

Young, Female - and Arab American

By Pauline Homsi Vinson

Swimming Toward the Light
By Angela Tahaan Leone
Syracuse University Press, 2007.

“Swimming Toward the Light,” a novel by Angela Tahaan Leone, is a heart-wrenching story of a sensitive and talented young girl named Irene, whose musical gifts and sense of self are suffocated by the intransigence and misunderstanding of her Lebanese immigrant parents and American peers.

Photo of a Nation

By Simone Fattal


A History of Photography in Lebanon 1840–1944
By Michel Fani
Editions de L’Escalier, 2005, 424 pp.

For an American reader, the experience of reading this book and exploring the photographs of Lebanon, which range from the earliest daguerreotypes to those taken in the middle of the 20th century, is likely to be an unalloyed pleasure.


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