by Hubert Haddad, translated by Pierre L'Abbé
Available from Guernica Editions
Somewhere in the West Bank, an Israeli patrol is attacked by Palestinian commandos. One soldier is killed and another kidnapped. Wounded, in a state of shock, the hostage loses hold of reality and forgets everything, even his own name. Eventually rescued and taken in by two Palestinian women, he becomes Nessim, brother of Falastìn, an idealist law student, and son of Asmahane, the blind widow of an official shot dead in an ambush. Nessim passes through the looking glass, suffering the daily anguish of the inhabitants of the colonized West Bank. In this poignant novel, Hubert Haddad makes Falastìn a modern Antigone: proud, untamed and the victim of man's cruelty. Reflecting the beauty of the setting in his style, he models a modern tragedy in all its horror and absurdity.
Born in Tunis and raised in Paris, Hubert Haddad has published more than fifty novels, plays, and essays. The original French version of Palestine won the Prix des Cinq Continents de la Francophonie in 2008, and the Prix Renaudot Poche in 2009. It has sold more than 60,000 copies.