BookBrowse Reviews The Girl Who Fell to Earth by Sophia Al-Maria

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The Girl Who Fell to Earth

A Memoir

by Sophia Al-Maria

The Girl Who Fell to Earth by Sophia Al-Maria
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  • Paperback:
    Nov 2012, 288 pages

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Book Reviewed by:
Jo Perry

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A young Arab-American woman's memoir describes her assimilation into an extended Bedouin family while the family itself is adjusting to life in an urban setting

Seattle-born writer Sophia Al-Maria's first book describes her childhood and young adulthood as the daughter of an American mother and a Bedouin father. Al-Maria's memoir is lovely and disorienting, traditional in its coming-of-age shape, but full of shocks and startling sensations. As Al-Maria journeys from a Seattle childhood to young adulthood in Qatar and Cairo, she tries to establish a fixed identity and to find equilibrium in two worlds. Al-Maria shows us American life from an Arab point of view and lifts the veil from Bedouin life to reveal unexpected freedoms, joys, dangers, and beauty.

Al-Maria is a sure and unsentimental historian of her own life, but she is most interesting when she's not focused on herself. She begins her story with her Bedouin father, Matar, relocated from a nomadic life to a more settled one in Doha, Qatar (see Beyond the Book). As a child Matar is an ...

About the Author
This is Sophia Al-Maria's debut book. In addition to her writing, she is an artist and a filmmaker. To see her one-minute film, click on the link below:

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