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Honor Lost: Love and Death in Modern-Day Jordan Hardcover – Bargain Price, February 4, 2003


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Hardcover, Bargain Price, February 4, 2003
$5.53 $1.52

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--This text refers to an alternate Hardcover edition.

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Unknown (February 4, 2003)
  • ISBN-10: 0743448782
  • ASIN: B0002ST9DY
  • Product Dimensions: 9.5 x 6.3 x 0.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 14.4 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 2.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (144 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,099,001 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

The timeless tragedy of Shakespeare's star-cross'd lovers is reflected in our modern era in this directly narrated but deeply affecting story of a Catholic man and a Muslim woman secretly in love in contemporary Jordan. Even in this relatively modern Islamic state, not only is it impossible for them to overcome ancient prejudices, but if they were known to have been together, however innocently, their lives, particularly that of the woman, could be forfeit. Khouri, a poet and short fiction writer (and Catholic) who now lives in exile because of the events she relates here, opened a unisex beauty salon in Amman with her dearest friend, Dalia, hoping to achieve some measure of freedom in a stultifying society in which women are wholly without rights and, once married, completely subservient to their husbands. Michael, an attractive young Catholic man, comes to the salon to have his hair cut by Dalia so often that she jokes he will soon be trimmed bald, until she realizes he is shyly interested in her-but she is Muslim. The two dare to love and plan to escape abroad. However, Dalia's younger brother suspects her of "dishonoring" the family by loving an outsider, and the ancient code of honor, as violently in effect today as ever, immediately demands the taking of her life to remove the stain. The importance of what Khouri has to say overcomes her guileless prose, and she does not hesitate to insert a lengthy chapter of Islamic history, especially condemning what she, as a Christian, perceives as the religion's rigidly determined, denigrating attitudes to women. While the book is not a polemic, its message, particularly resonant in today's world, in which Islam has become a major player, conveys some knowledge of that world and its thinking in general, but in regard to the rights of women, it holds an especially significant appeal.
Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an alternate Hardcover edition.

From Library Journal

Two young women in Jordan defy their families to open a hair salon, but when one of them falls for a Catholic man who enters the salon, she is ultimately killed by her father. The author was forced to leave the country after writing this work secretly in an Internet cafe.
Copyright 2002 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an alternate Hardcover edition.

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Customer Reviews

For this reason, I cannot believe Dalia's `love story' just because she said so in her book.
"ammani_ali"
I forgave what I thought was a poorly written book because I believed that the author was sharing an important story, even if she didn't know how to write it well.
SpecialK
My suggestion to those reading this review, dont waste your money on a book like this, it is not real and not fun to read at all.
Noorana T.

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

45 of 50 people found the following review helpful By Paul on July 17, 2003
Format: Hardcover
I�d like to share with your readers some of my findings about this book, if I may. Thank you.
The author claims in her book (a claim repeated in her review of Queen Noor�s book �Leap of Faith�) that many Jordanian women are in jail for their own protection as they fear that they might be killed by their families. As an Australian of Jordanian descent, I know for a fact that it is indeed true and I believe that it shouldn�t happen as it is plain injustice that we should all fight.
But, by writing so in her book, the author shot unknowingly herself in the foot because, if she was REALLY threatened with death by her OWN family for 5 years, why didn�t she seek the jail�s protection against her family�s �death threat� like the other women? Quite the opposite, she spent the last FIVE YEARS of her life in Jordan AT HOME not in jail �in fear of her family�!
This is yet another undeniable proof that there was NO death threat made against her by her family. In fact, as two reviewers already noticed, her family belongs to a social upper class that does not believe in honour killing. Somehow, she �forgot� to mention this fact in her book. One wonders why!
If her family REALLY threatened her with death, she would have headed towards the nearest prison asking for protection, the VERY SAME day the threat was made. Something she didn�t do for FIVE WHOLE YEARS, by deciding to stay at home. So much for that �death threat�! Also a death threat that remains active for 5 years is just laughable.
I am therefore sad to say that this book is a pack of lies, written for a gullible and perhaps prejudiced western readership. This �death threat� claim and episode is just another illustrative example of the tendency of this book to be caught increasingly in the web of its own lies.
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31 of 34 people found the following review helpful By Michael J. Edelman TOP 100 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on July 27, 2004
Format: Hardcover
Positive, even glowing reviews have been written in the NYT Book Review and elsewhere about this woman's brave attmept to tell a story that needs to be told. Sure, her prose isn't the greatest, and she stumbles at times, but what a story!

Unfortunately, it's all a complete fabrication. Khouri created a fictional potboiler and had a lot of people fooled. And the great pity of it is that women *are* treated as second class citizens in that part of the world, that family honor killings *do* take place, in countries like Saudi Arabia and elsewhere, and Khouri's fabrications will only serve to cast doubt on the real stories.
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42 of 48 people found the following review helpful By Noorana T. on June 4, 2003
Format: Hardcover
I read a summary about this book in Australian's Women Weekly Mag and felt great deal of sympathy towards the author and her friend, so I went online and bought the book instantly.
21 pages is the maximum I could go with this book, I could not take the lies in it anymore. As a matter of fact, I believe it should enter the Guiness books of records as "the publication with the largest number of lies ever"!. Norma, maybe this will get you more fame, which is obviously the only reason why you wrote this book.
With all due respect to the people who liked this book, I think you should travel to Jordan before deciding that it was a good book and from the first sight, you will understand that it is all lies.
Being half Jordanian myself, I never saw anything that the author describes in Jordan at this age and time, is it the same Jordan we are talking about?
My suggestion to those reading this review, dont waste your money on a book like this, it is not real and not fun to read at all. The summary written above is all what the book is about.
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50 of 58 people found the following review helpful By Laura Samir Haddad on July 28, 2003
Format: Hardcover
I, a Jordanian-American also a devoted supporter of women's rights and development in the region, was quite disappointed with this book. While most of us agree with Norma that the legal and cultural justifications for honour killings are wrong, we should not go about educating ourselves and others by fostering stereotypes which degrade Islam and Arabs in general. Such seemed to be the case as I read through Honor Lost. While Norma in some ways painted a vivid picture of Jordan by describing its geographic landscape and food, in other ways she merely generalizes and essentializes life in Jordan to a prison and suggests that Arab women are oppressed while western women are liberated. While her life and that of her friend may have been as she described, she cannot assume although she does that this is the life of all women in Jordan. Just like in the West, the Middle East is diverse, not all women live the same. Norma failed to mention the night life in Jordan which includes not only elite women, and that most Muslim men and women in Jordan shake hands and eat together (she writes otherwise). Norma also attacked Islam by selectively citing from the Qur'an, stating that it supported honor killings. In actuality Islam does not openly support honor killings any more than Christianity does. One can selectively cite from the Bible as well to suggest that it is inherently oppressive to women. Also, Jordanians today do not adhere to the Islamic laws of Saudi Arabia, for example, but you would never know that from reading this book. Her numerous references to Muslims reminded me (as a Christian myself) of the discriminatory comments I hear from Arab Christians (and others) about Muslims - she just repeated what she probably heard all her life about Islam to justify the 'superiority' of her religion.Read more ›
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