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Algeria

Leïla Marouane

© Hermance Triay

Leïla Marouane

Leïla Marouane was born in Algeria in 1960 and has lived and worked in Paris since 1990. In addition to The Sexual Life of an Islamist in Paris, she is the author of four novels and one collection of short stories. In 2004, she was awarded the Liberatur Prize at the Frankfurt Book Fair, and in 2006 the prestigious Prix Jean-Claude Izzo for her novel, La jeune fille et la mère.  

All Leïla Marouane's books

Latest reviews

  • I finished The Sexual Life of an Islamist in Paris, by Leїla Marouane, on a night when it was raining in Tallahassee, and the café where I had been reading was a warm balm effusing a yellow light of calm against a stormy sky. I closed the page and looked out the window to a...
    — May 21 2015
  • font-face { font-family: "Cambria"; }@font-face { font-family: "Garamond"; }p.MsoNormal, li.MsoNormal, div.MsoNormal { margin: 0in 0in 0.0001pt; font-size: 12pt; font-family: "Times New Roman"; }div.Section1 { page: Section1; } Reviewed by Sara C. Rauch for New Pages...
    — Oct 1 2010
  • font-face { font-family: "Cambria"; }@font-face { font-family: "Garamond"; }@font-face { font-family: "Georgia"; }p.MsoNormal, li.MsoNormal, div.MsoNormal { margin: 0in 0in 0.0001pt; font-size: 12pt; font-family: "Times New Roman"; }div.Section1 { page: Section1; } In 1995,...
    — Sep 16 2010
  • font-face { font-family: "Cambria"; }@font-face { font-family: "Garamond"; }p.MsoNormal, li.MsoNormal, div.MsoNormal { margin: 0in 0in 0.0001pt; font-size: 12pt; font-family: "Times New Roman"; }div.Section1 { page: Section1; } What a delectable title! The cover of this book...
    — Sep 15 2010
  • In four novels and a collection of short stories, Leïla Marouane has become a voice for the Algerian women’s rights movement, exploring themes of marriage, sex, and identity in the context of the religious and cultural divide of the Maghreb/Western Europe region. She fearlessly...
    — Aug 19 2010
  • To disguise his Algerian heritage and land a job at a French bank, the narrator of this tragicomic novel has whitened his skin, straightened his hair, and legally changed his name—in short, declared “an ethnic war against himself.” Once a devout Muslim, he is now bent on...
    — Aug 16 2010
  • Basile Tocquard needs to get away from his mother. At 40, he is too old for Sunday couscous and too young to marry a “nice Algerian girl.” This is the other Paris, city of expectations, late-night coffee in Saint Germain, “bluish plumes caressing the rooftops,” holy water...
    — Jun 27 2010
  • As first lines go, that of Leïla Marouane’s second novel and debut in English, The Abductor (2000, translated by Felicity McNab), is a masterpiece of concision and intrigue: “My father lay helpless on the sofa while my mother was being joined to Youssef Allouchi in lawful...
    — Jun 11 2010
  • The handsome Algerian bachelor Mohamed Ben Mokhtar has managed (with the aid of straightened hair, whitened skin, a European name, and buckets of cash) to skirt Parisian prejudices and rent a classy apartment in the upscale Saint-Germain-des-Prés, where, after a lifetime of...
    — May 31 2010
  • At the center of this Algerian author’s newly translated novel is Mohamed Ben Mokhtar, a pious, 40-year-old virgin who lives outside Paris with his nagging mother. One day Mokhtar decides he’s had enough: He shaves his beard and acquires a “Frenchified” name and, finally,...
    — May 31 2010
  • Mohamed used to be the perfect Muslim. He came from a conservative, fanatical small town in Algeria. He led the prayers and recited sermons. Now he's living in Paris and using skin-whitening cream. He's straightened his hair. He's turned his back on his Arabic past. He works...
    — May 21 2010
  • A Muslim man struggles with culture and identity in the City of Lights in this urbanely complex study by Algerian feminist writer Marouane (The Abductor, 2001, etc.). The novel opens with a man anxious about renting an apartment in the stylish Saint-Germain-des-Prés neighborhood...
    — Apr 6 2010
  • One of the joys of reading literature in translation is coming across new methods of storytelling and innovative aesthetic models that American authors today seem reluctant to attempt and that the vast majority of American publishers are loath to take on. It’s not only pleasurable...
    — Feb 26 2010
  • Leila Marouane’s novel is the tragicomic story of a French man of Algerian origin who is trying to run away from his heritage. A forty-year-old virgin, he longs to escape from the dominating influence of his mother and become a Don Juan among women. A resident of one of the...
    — Feb 1 2010

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