A struggling writer walks every inch of the city in search of inspiration, only to find it is much closer than she imagined…
A girl collapses from hunger at the side of the road and is rescued by the most unlikely of saviours...
In this powerful, debut collection, Rania Mamoun expertly blends the real and imagined to create a rich, complex and moving portrait of contemporary Sudan. From painful encounters with loved ones to unexpected new friendships, Mamoun illuminates the breadth of human experience and explores, with humour and compassion, the alienation, isolation and estrangement that is urban life.
Translated from the Arabic by Elisabeth Jaquette.
One of World Literature Today's 75 Notable Translations of 2019.
One of The Guardian's 'Top 10 books about Sudan'.
One of Bustle's '25 New Short Story Collections To Read This Summer'.
One of Bookshy Book's 'Ten-Plus Short Story Collections from Writers of African Origin'.
It is a phenomental, exacting collection. It's intense and intimate, and always bordering, with absolute control, on the subversive and erotic. It's also very funny - Rania Mamoun is an extraordinary talent.' - Preti Taneja, author of We That Are Young
‘A stunning collection, remarkable for its sweet clarity of voice and startling depictions of the marginalised and the destitute. With mastery, Rania Mamoun reaches straight into the heartbeat of her subject matter, laying bare humanity in all its tenderness and tenacity.’ - Leila Aboulela, author of Elsewhere Home
Born in 1979, Rania Mamoun is a Sudanese author, journalist, and activist. She has published two novels in Arabic – Green Flash (2006) and Son of the Sun (2013) – as well as a short story collection Thirteen Months of Sunrise,which will be published in English by Comma Press in 2018. Her short stories have been published in various magazines and anthologies, including The Book of Khartoum (Comma Press, 2016), the first ever anthology of Sudanese short fiction in translation. She has also worked as culture page editor of Al-Thaqafi magazine, a columnist for Ad-Adwaa newspaper and presenter of the ‘Silicon Valley’ cultural programme on Sudanese TV.
'All the men I did get to know filled me with but one desire: to lift my hand and bring it smashing down on his face.'
So begins Firdaus's remarkable story of rebellion against a society founded on lies, hypocrisy, brutality and oppression. Born to a peasant family in the Egyptian countryside, Firdaus struggles through childhood, seeking compassion and knowledge in a world which gives her little of either. As she grows up and escapes the fetters of her childhood, each new relationship teaches her a bitter but liberating truth – that the only free people are those who want nothing, fear nothing and hope for nothing.
This classic novel has been an inspiration to countless people across the world. Saadawi's searing indictment of society's brutal treatment of women continues to resonate today.