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About Jean Naggar
I wear two hats. One takes me out into the world to do battle for authors whose works I love, and the other seats me in solitude to weave words.
The first hat used to dwarf the second, but since the publication of my memoir, SIPPING FROM THE NILE, the second hat has grown feathers and flowers and plants roots in my subconscious as I navigate the world.
Jean Naggar was born in Alexandria, Egypt where her mother's parents lived. She grew up in Cairo, attended the Gezira Preparatory School and then The English School in Heliopolis before going to Roedean School in England, for her high school years. The magical world of her childhood as daughter of two prominent Sephardic Jewish families came to a dramatic end in 1956 when Gamal Abdel Nasser nationalized the Suez Canal and brought about the Suez Crisis that scattered the Jewish population of Egypt. She has recorded this lost world in her memoir, Sipping From the Nile: My Exodus From Egypt.
After graduating from London University Jean (Mosseri) Naggar met and married Serge Naggar, the "boy next door" and followed him to New York City where she has lived ever since. A voracious reader all her life, she wrote poetry which was published in The Listener and Athanor, translated books, and her work was published in the New York Times, the Village Voice and Publishers Weekly.
In 1978 she founded the Jean V. Naggar Literary Agency (see www.JVNLA.com)and was responsible for bringing many iconic writers to the attention of the reading public, happily sharing her reading passions with the world. She is a former president of AAR and has been sought after as a speaker at events around the US. Mother of three adult children and grandmother of seven, she is at last exploring her childhood dream: to write.
Visit her at http://www.jeannaggar.com/ and http://www.huffingtonpost.com/jean-naggar/egypts-forgotten-jews_b_2235098.html
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An enchanted way of life suddenly ended by multinational hostilities, her close-knit extended family is soon scattered far and wide. Naggar’s own family moves to London where she finishes her schooling and is swept into adulthood and the challenge of new horizons in America. Speaking for a different wave of immigrants whose Sephardic origins highlight the American Jewish story through an unfamiliar lens, Naggar traces her personal journey through lost worlds and difficult transitions, exotic locales and strong family values. The story resonates for all in this poignant exploration of the innocence of childhood in a world breaking apart.
Driven by a mother's sacrifice to save her daughter from abuse, and a lifetime of poverty, deprivation and neglect, Footprints on the Heart unwinds an epic tale of love, loss, and exile in the lives of unforgettable characters, as they navigate the turbulence of six decades against a backdrop of powerful world events.
Connected by circumstance and destiny, the lives of a celebrity model in New York, a goatherd from the upper Nile valley, and a young Jew cast out of his native land set off a chain of events amid lyrical evocations of the Egypt that fostered them all. How they navigate their lives and the fault lines that exist in each of them forms the substance of a complex novel of chance, passion, and history. Ripped from their comfort zones and their Egyptian birthplace, their destinies shaped by a land and a world in turmoil, each is propelled into New York worlds of challenge and opportunity, fashion and finance.