5 1/4" x 8" • 464 pages
ISBN 9780704381421 • paperback • $12.95 •
"A little jewel of a book, The Abductor is a unique novel that stands out on the Algerian literary landscape." — Le Nouvel Observateur
Mrs. Nayla Zeitoun has just been informed by her son Omar that she has become a grandmother for the first time. In the ensuing excitement, he mentions the baby's weight whereupon Mrs. Zeitoun flies out of the house with a handful of salt to dispel the evil eye. It is a belief that if a baby's weight is known at large, the child will be cursed with bad luck. Her daughters watch in astonishment for Mrs. Zeitoun has never left the house unaccompanied by a male member of the family. They await the return of their father in silence and trepidation.
When Mr. Zeitoun learns of his wife's absence he turns to violence before he repudiates her three times upon her return. According to Islamic law he is unable to remarry his wife unless she is married and divorced to someone else. He convinces an unassuming neighbor, who happens to be a bachelor, to marry his wife with the understanding that after three months he will divorce her so she can then remarry Mr. Zeitoun. Mr. Zeitoun thought that he had taken care of the laws of God and society, yet he had not anticipated the turn of events his plan would take.
Leila Marouane was born in Algeria in 1960. She has worked as a journalist in Algiers, Berlin, Zurich and Paris. She is now living in France.
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