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The Map of Love
By Ahdaf Soueif
7/10 from 1 review
Categories: Fiction
1 review
history + travel + politics + romance = late nights + muscles
I spent a lot of my teenage years and early 20s reading blockbusters of various types, largely working my way through historical novels, of which I rate Dorothy Dunnett's 2 Scottish series most highly (but more about Lymond and Niccolo elsewhere). Since joining the Clapham commuting masses, the opportunities for indulging in longer works of fiction have been reduced. However, The Map of Love proved worth lugging between CJ and Moorgate, and even all the way out to Walton.

The novel deals with the story of a London widow who travels to Egypt in the closing years of the 19th century seeking inner peace after the death/demise of her husband.

A true blockbuster complete with parallel love themes, the novel also educates the European reader on "Victorian", “imperial” history from the perspective of the inhabitants of the occupied country, nascent nation and ancient culture - in this case Egypt - which would rather have been left to resurface as a nation in its own right after centuries under the Ottoman Turks. The modern story - with similarities with Possession - left something wanting, but that's just as likely to reflect my unfamiliarity with later 20th century international Egyptian society, echoing the ignorant attitude which made British involvement in the Middle East so unpopular a century earlier.
Rating: 7/10
Link to this review
Posted by Mary on Mon, 21st October 2002, 11:01pm
1 review