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It is read very slowly, which I liked. This gave me time to appreciate the poetry of his lines and to jot down Arabic names of which I am unfamiliar. Fluent in both English and Arabic, there are no mispronunciations. He does a very good job. There is a technical problem with the audiobook. At one point a section of the book is read twice! The author is clearly both his father's and his grandfather's descendant. Fascinating people to read about! View all 6 comments. Very male author Hisham Matar, the respected masculine writer of this award-winning very masculine-gendered book, had manfully loved, admired, and pined away for his masculine missing Father for decades.

Hisham manfully questions, calls and visits manly Libyan men and masculine-gender Libyan relatives who were involved with his masculine Father. Hisham Matar was born in New York City where only masculine-gendered people apparently live. The Libyan diplomat Jaballa Matar and family returned to Libya when masculine-gender Hisham was three.

Masculine-gender Hisham finished growing up in men-only-matter Egypt until he went to London to attend school and university at age While Hisham was in London at age 19, he received word Jaballa had been kidnapped from Cairo by agents of Muammer Qaddafi, butch masculine-gender Libyan leader-for-life which actually worked out to be 42 years. The kidnapping of Jaballa occurred in Except for two letters, the masculine Matar family in Egypt never heard from Jaballa again.

Matar appreciated her ugh ability to find Libyan olive oil.

Some of the surviving masculine-gender Matar relatives were imprisoned with masculine Jaballa in the infamous butch Libyan prison, Abu Salim. Jaballa was imprisoned and tortured after being kidnapped from men-only-matter Egypt. Abu Salim was attacked by anti-Qaddafi rebels in when Qaddafi was overthrown and all of the masculine-gender prisoners who were still alive were released. They all spoke of a massacre of masculine-gender prisoners in Manly Hisham suspects his still missing masculine-gender Father met his death in this massacre of prisoners.

However, Qaddafi soon followed in the footsteps of all butch African and Middle-eastern leaders and established a strict masculine kleptocrat dictatorship with male theocratic pretensions. He staged a number of political purges of important rich male Libyans. Many Libyans went into exile in the men-only-matter country of Egypt after fleeing Libya. Jaballa made his home in Egypt with a lot of loyal male relatives, raising his two boys single-handed, apparently, without any women helping or even many existing apparently mother mentioned as confined to the kitchen.

These male relatives and male friends, and some masculine-gender Qaddafi supporters, are the only people who matter in every chapter in the book. Diana is an artist and companion, so he puts her name into the book more often than mentions of his mom, but never with any implied or actual importance. Not once did Matar mention any other women except the brief sentences about his agent, mother and wife ghosting through occasionally in all of these hundreds of pages and pages and pages of different men meeting, drinking, eating and talking about history, grief, death and politics in different countries.

You know what I mean, important talk and memories only those humans with brains know and retain - stuff women could not possibly understand or have any knowledge about, since whatever any woman may have heard, seen, experienced or witnessed is completely beyond any female's mental capacity to process. I happen to know that women do exist in Libya, Egypt, London and New York City, including women who suffered in prisons and who fought against cruel political oppression or who have feelings they express about their imprisoned husbands, fathers and sons.

I suspect Matar's Mom and Diana actually have opinions and sufferings. This book is unforgivably oppressively sexist. Matar gives the impression he feels women are only brainless uncaring sheep, particularly when mentioning his mother. Women are apparently too unimportant or unaware for any inclusion or mention in these pages about the Matar family grief and losses experienced in these horrific civil wars and atrocities. This book is not recommended by me. View all 45 comments.

Now, the prisons are empty and little Description: NYTimes link hattip to Wandaful Surely such journeys were reckless. This one could rob me of a skill that I have worked hard to cultivate: Joseph Brodsky was right. So were Nabokov and Conrad. They were artists who never returned.


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Each had tried, in his own way, to cure himself of his country. Expertly documented, without hyperbole or sensationalism, The Return is a must for those looking to understand more of the politics and modern history of never-at-peace Libya. Deeply moving, this is quite possibly the best book I've read so far this year! In this memoir, Matar writes of his personal experience of the Libyan revolution, it's history, and the disastrous effects complete power can have on a nation. He writes of his family's time in exile, of grief and of loss, with an underlying note of hope throughout.

Exquisitely written, this book deserves a lot more credit. It may hurt your heart a little, but I think we all need that from time to time. Straight to t Deeply moving, this is quite possibly the best book I've read so far this year! Straight to the favorites shelf. One of my favourite TV shows at the moment is The Leftovers. On an ordinary October day in , two percent of world's population vanishes simultaneously, without trace.

The plot focuses not on the mystery of the disappearance but on the deep anguish of the people left behind. It is the uncertainty surrounding the departure that hurts the most - those that remain cannot know for sure if their missing loved ones are dead or alive.

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They are forever denied a sense of closure - they don't even have One of my favourite TV shows at the moment is The Leftovers. They are forever denied a sense of closure - they don't even have a body to bury. The Return tells the story of a real-life abduction and the devastating effect it had on that person's family.

Hisham Matar, a Booker short-listed novelist, grew up in Libya of the s. His father Jaballa, a prominent businessman and vocal opponent of the Gadaffi regime, moved the family to Cairo in over fears for their safety. A decade later, Jaballa was kidnapped by Libyan forces and incarcerated in Tripoli's infamous Abu Salim prison. Though his wife and sons always dreamed of his release, they never saw him again.

This is the story of Hisham's return to Libya - his tireless search for the truth and his attempts to make peace with years of suffering. Hisham worshipped Jaballa, a intelligent, cultured man and an inspiration to many during the difficult years of Gadaffi's despotic rule. He felt compelled to become one the leaders of the resistance which of course placed a target on his back.

Throughout the book, Hisham talks with many of his father's fellow prisoners in Abu Salim. They all speak of him as a hero, a person who never bowed to his captors and always looked out for his comrades in their torturous conditions. We soon begin to understand the enormous impact this event has had on Hisham's life. In the years following the abduction, he lived in a constant flux of anger and despair.

Though he suspected that his father died in a prison massacre, there were sightings of him from other prisoners after this date. This gave him hope and with the help of the British government, he began a campaign for Jaballa's release. He had to discover his father's fate and could not rest until he had done so. The uncertainty ate him up and almost consumed him - he admits to thoughts of suicide at one point. This memoir must have been incredibly traumatic to write, and it is harrowing to comprehend the agony he went through: This, I believe, is part of the intention.

You make a man disappear to silence him but also to narrow the minds of those left behind, to pervert their soul and limit their imagination. When Gadaffi took my father, he placed me in a space not much bigger than the cell Father was in. The timeline can be a little hard to discern given the circular narrative and I would have preferred if the whole account was a bit more linear. But it recently won the Pulitzer Prize for Biography so what do I know?

Hisham Matar's courage and dignity stand out above all, and his sensitive, honest writing is the treasure that came out of this darkness. His father would have been immensely proud. View all 4 comments. Jan 27, Sarah rated it liked it Shelves: This book… I did not like this book at all, which made me feel super guilty, because the subject matter is horrible, but something kept niggling at me.

Please write your own book! I have a feeling that would be worth reading! Maybe I just have a problem with memoirs. So began a 42 year reign of terror by the iron grip of Qaddafi and his family and supporters, where anyone who dared oppose the regime would be removed and imprisoned. Hisham Matar was born in the United States as his father was working there at the time with the Libyan delegation to the UN. At the age of three, he first set foot in his home country.

It was to become his home for the next few years, but as the political persecution grew in the country, Jaballa Matar was accused of being opposed to the regime. The family fled the country and Hisham and his brother spent the rest of their childhood in Cairo.

The Return: Fathers, Sons, and the Land in Between

University beckoned, and Hisham headed to London to study. Whilst he was in London, his father was kidnapped by the Egyptian secret police, and handed over to the Libyan authorities. Hisham Matar last saw his father when he was nineteen. He was never to see or speak to him again. It explained what had happened and he said he was in the infamous Abu Salim prison.

They received no other details until , when Hisham was told that his father had been seen in , implying that he had survived the horrific massacre of prisoners in Everything changed in ; another revolution overthrew Qaddafi and for the first time in 22 years Hisham could return to his homeland once again and see family that he never thought he would see.

He involves the Foreign Office, as the Labour government at the time was building a relationship with Qaddafi, even having meetings with David Miliband to push for answers from the Libyan authorities on his father. He talks with and meets Sief el-Islam in the hope of finding something; but all he gets is promises. It is an eloquent but painful and emotional memoir to read; you feel his anguish every step of his journey. But it is fascinating too; there is as much about the humanity of some and the shocking indifference from others.

Jun 02, AC rated it it was ok Shelves: I'm the odd one out here, I guess. Better luck to others. This is a wonderful book. Read it and be a part of humanity. Jan 23, Ken rated it really liked it Shelves: This memoir is the long, sad story of a year-old Libyan boy the author, Hisham Matar who learns his father has been kidnapped and imprisoned as an opposition leader by Qaddafi.

Finding out what became of his father becomes Hisham's lifelong purpose, and it's all detailed in this book. In addition to tales of the family clan and the search, Hisham gives a little history of Libya which, I daresay, many no little about. For instance, I learned that the Italians who occupied Libya as colonial op This memoir is the long, sad story of a year-old Libyan boy the author, Hisham Matar who learns his father has been kidnapped and imprisoned as an opposition leader by Qaddafi.

For instance, I learned that the Italians who occupied Libya as colonial oppressors engaged in outright genocide by the time the fascist Mussolini was in control of Italy. Bleak, but well done. Ou daquele sonho recorrente que costumava ter, depois de terem levado o meu pai, em que percebia que tinha sido arrastado pelas correntes marinhas para o mar alto.

Aug 07, Atty. Winston rated it it was amazing. Wow, this book hooked me from the start and glued me to every page! Eloquently written and deeply felt, The Return by Hisham Matar is a haunting memoir about a son investigating the fate of his missing father under Qaddafi's reign in Libya.

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Hisham endeavors also to convey the modern history of Libya, what it was like to live under a brutal dictatorship and how the dissidents were inhumanely treated. This is a story of a terribly unimaginable deeds, but also a tale of oozing hope and indomitable Wow, this book hooked me from the start and glued me to every page! This is a story of a terribly unimaginable deeds, but also a tale of oozing hope and indomitable courage, loyalty and strength.

It simply must be read. Non possiedo una grammatica per lui. Da quel momento il silenzio. E nel passato, nel presente e nel futuro. Ho il sospetto che anche coloro che hanno sepolto il proprio padre provino la stessa cosa. Io non sono diverso. E che talvolta trova balsamo o epifanie nel sostare di fronti a grandi capolavori artistici.

Sarei passato a un altro quadro solo quando avessi esaurito il mio interesse. Un libro estremamente denso, drammatico e poetico, personale e collettivo. Il dolore rattrappisce il cuore. Fai sparire un uomo per metterlo a tacere ma anche per restringere la mente di quelli che rimangono, per corromperne l'anima e limitarne l'immaginazione.

Il romanzo che stavo scrivendo non funzionava. Ero sopraffatto da desiderio di essere spazzato via. Volevo scendere negli abissi ed essere perduto per sempre. Ho letto le prime pagine un po' stancamente. Quando si parla di Libia ci siamo di mezzo anche noi. Colpisce come una pugnalata.

The Return ( film) - Wikipedia

Migliaia di funzionari e intellettuali libici deportati in Italia e morti in prigione. Bombe sui villaggi, campi di concentramento. Pulitzer per la biografia. Mar 15, Fatimah Elfeitori rated it it was amazing. Thoughtful, emotional, philosophical and highly relatable. I cannot recommend this book enough! Hisham Matar put into words my unexplained sense of 'belonging' and over romanticization of Benghazi, and Libya. Revolutions are not solid gates through which nations pass but a force comparable to a storm that sweeps all before it. But there is something else, a material that does not belong to any other culture or period.

It is timeless and unique to Benghazi. It is perhaps the most important architectural material there is, more than stone. The Benghazi light is a material. You can almost feel its weight, the way it falls and holds its subject. Anything seemed possible, and nearly every individual I met spoke of his optimism and foreboding in the same breath. Jan 03, Piyali rated it it was amazing Shelves: I read this book with my phone sitting next to me. I learnt quite a bit of Libyan history as I read about Matar's quest to find out what happened to his father Jaballa Matar once he was kidnapped from his Cairo flat and imprisoned in the notorious Abu Salim prison by Gaddafi.

After two and a half decades and numerous attempts to locate him Hisham Matar still does not know. A difficult read yet a compelling one. After I finished the book this Persian poem came to my mind: Feb 10, Mikey B. This is about prisoners in the jails of Libya during the long Qaddafi dictatorship. From there he was sent to Libya and essentially disappeared in the morass of the Libyan prison system.

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This happened in when the author was 19 years old. Understan This is about prisoners in the jails of Libya during the long Qaddafi dictatorship. On occasion he would even receive a letter from his father that was smuggled out of the prisons — and it was essential to never reveal these letters to the outside world, because tragedy would doubtless occur to anyone involved in this letter trafficking. After the overthrow of Qaddafi in , the author returns to Libya meeting family members, some of whom were imprisoned.

There are many affecting passages. Page my book So much information is lost that every small loss provokes inexplicable grief. Power must know this. Power must know how fatigued human nature is, and how unready we are to listen, and how willing we are to settle for lies. Power must know that, ultimately, we would rather not know. Power must believe, given how things proceed, that the world was better made for the perpetrator than for those who arrive after the fact, seeking justice or accountability or truth.

Power must see such attempts as pathetic, and yet the bereaved, the witness, the investigator and the chronicler cannot but try to make reason of this diabolical mess Yet also, with every folding year, like the line of a step mimicking the one before it, it becomes increasingly difficult to escape, to give up altogether on what has been invested so far, least of all the person swallowed up by the injustice. A joinery instructor at a rehab center refuses to take a new teen as his apprentice, but then begins to follow the boy through the hallways and streets.

Dima Nikitin is an ordinary honest plumber who suddenly decides to face the corrupt system of local politics in order to save the lives of inhabitants of an old dormitory, which is about to collapse. The events of the film unfold over six days and tell about the mysterious journey of a strange man and his two teenage sons who had never seen him before. Vanya and Andrey, for how long they remember, lived with their mother, who once told them that their father was a pilot.

But one ordinary Monday, dad appears in their house and takes the brothers on a hike to a small island in the middle of a forest lake. Written by Peter-Patrick76 peter-patrick mail. Hollywood with the exception of Orson Welles, Stanley Kubrick and Terrence Mallick is dwarfed in the company of these giants. Andrei Zvyagintsev follows in the footsteps of these giants. The opening shots remind you of Tarkovsky and the bleak, barren landscapes of Kozintsev.

Yet "The Return" with all its finesse and depth of subject matter does not hold a candle to the works of the four aforementioned Soviet filmmakers. I was fortunate to see the film at the Dubai film festival yesterday. At the most easy level, the film can be interpreted as a chronicle of two children chronicling with a help of a diary written by two male siblings the events of a week with their father that facilitates their transformation from childhood to manhood metaphorically.

At a more complex level, the film can also be interpreted as a political film--with the father figure representing the strong Communist USSR and the death of that state. The two sons can be interpreted as one representing the section that accepted subjugation by the state and the other that rebelled against the state and demanded freedom and democracy. At yet another level, the film provides the option of being interpreted in religious terms.

Is the father figure any different from Christ coming to the world to help the world, and die in the process to be accepted by those who believe and don't believe. The film is scattered with clues that afford this interpretation: One reason is that most Russians are deeply religious individuals. At the same time one could argue that all these were coincidences and there is no Biblical reference in the film.

The brilliance of "The return" and the films of the other four Russian directors are outstanding because they too could be entertaining at different levels and thus appeal to you 50 to 80 years after they were made. The sudden rains, the sound of trains are not new--Tarkovsky used these effects in "Stalker. The film is in color--yet the colors are muted with only the red car standing out. Kozintsev refused to film "Hamlet" and "King Lear" in color; Tarkovsky also used muted colors and sepia tints often. The most jarring fact is that the young actor who played the elder brother died in the very lake months after the film was made.

The stark, spartan, evocative film deserved the Golden Lion at Venice film festival awarded this year. By a coincidence, precisely 40 years ago Venice had honored Kozintsev's "Hamlet"! The brilliance of "The Return" is all pervasive--acting, direction, photography, editing, screenplay and yet the film is not as great as a Tarkovsky or a Kozintsev.

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