Have you ever picked up something and expected one thing and then get something totally different? Honestly, I don't know what I expected from this book, but what I got was a trip to a place I have only dreamed about. Stealing Fatima's Hand is absolutely hilarious and at the same time heartwarming. Carolyn Thériault is quite a storyteller. Her escapades and adventures are enchanting and a little disturbing in their candor. As a brand new international traveler, I can tell you that remembering my recent trip to Pakistan, I found myself laughing nearly to the point of tears while nodding right along with many of her mishaps and experiences. Whether you've ever been anywhere or not, I highly recommend this book. It's one adventure not to be missed.
Carolyn Theriault presents a boisterous account of a stay in Morocco, where she taught English for two years in the capital, Rabat. This is a fearlessly honest book focussing on the many things she didn't like. In which other book can one find mention of the unique- and to a westerner, insane- positioning of Moroccan traffic lights? Unlike other authors who dutifully trot out details of ancient history, Ms. Theriault only dips into the past in the last 20 pages to help underline her negative response to Moroccans. (There is no report of any "social" contact with them.) She manages to dilute her aversion to this foreign culture somewhat with the buffoonery of her literary style/persona (her real self?), and her rant works to a certain extent due to her powers of observation, but her distaste for their way of life keeps her from entering in any meaningful way into Moroccan reality. She does admit, however, that she did like the weather, the bread and the greasy doughnuts.
I started this book unsure of what to expect but the title intrigued me, and I love reading about new places. I was immediately drawn into this book. The author is very talented and manages to create a novel with an interesting story as well as describe Morocco in many different ways. I love her imagery and her detailed descriptions of places, feelings and events.
The story focuses on the journey of a young woman who decides to leave her comfortable life and travel to Morocco. She wants to experience new things and is lured by the need for adventure and excitement. She seems to get more than she bargains for and the reader will see how she adapts to such a widely different place and culture. You will enjoy joining Carolyn on her journey and you will also finish the novel with a deeper understanding of life in Morocco both good and bad.
I did not really know what to expect when I started reading this one. I thought the brief description of the book on Amazon made the book sound a little stuffy and full of itself. However, I was very happy to see (and read) that this was not the case at all. This book is both entertaining and very honest.
I liked the premise of this book because, I have thought of chucking it all and just starting over somewhere else - start a clean slate and maybe, in the process make some extra money. So, I absolutely understand Carolyn's view of wanting to do something else - something both kind of exciting and far, far away from your everyday problems.
However, geographical cures never work and Carolyn soon learns this. Although she leaves some problems behind, she certainly finds more - especially in a place such as Morocco where she does not understand the language, the customs or anything much else for that matter.
This "travel" fest is very different from what you are use to. Unlike other books that write of only the "beautiful" side of the country they are in, Carolyn manages to write about it all and even manages to make some of it funny, some of it thoughtful and some of it just plain weird.
I liked her pace and I liked her writing - this was an interesting and informative book and, as always, I am appreciative of an author who writes honestly about their experiences.
As for the title, not too crazy about that, but otherwise great read.
Have you ever thought about starting over in a new place? What would it be like to leave all your troubles behind you and begin again? In "Stealing Fatima's Hand" the author decides she wants to try something new and exciting in a faraway place, Morocco. Carolyn Theriault has written this book about her travels through the country. Unlike some authors, she doesn't only tell of the beautiful side of life, but also the trial and tribulations of traveling in a place with different lifestyles and beliefs.
I specifically enjoyed this book because it was an honest look at the difficulties travel in foreign countries. The author also has a great way of telling the story with her own humor added in the mix. I would definitely recommend this book for anyone who enjoys reading a good memoir.