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Publisher's Summary

Raised on Charles Baudelaire, A Clockwork Orange, and fine Bordeaux in 1970s Lebanon, Darina Al-Joundi was encouraged by her unconventional father to defy all taboos. As the bombs fell, she lived an adolescence of excess and transgression, defying death in nightclubs. The more oppressive the country became, the more drugs and anonymous sex she had, fueling the resentment by day of the same men who would spend the night with her. As the war dies down, she begins to incur the consequences of her lifestyle. On his deathbed, her father's last wish is for his favorite song, "Sinnerman" by Nina Simone, to be played at his funeral instead of the traditional suras of the Koran. When she does just that, the results are catastrophic.
In this dramatic true story, Darina Al-Joundi is defiantly passionate about living her life as a liberated woman, even if it means leaving everyone and everything behind.
©2011 Darina Al-Joundi (P)2013 Audible, Inc.
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
1 out of 5 stars
By joyce on 10-28-13

I did this, then I did that, then I did that, then

The author of this book is very proud of how unconventional she is, and thought that would make a great story. I have to wonder who published this book, as it is simply awful, deadly boring. Apparently the author finds her story fascinating, but I'm not sure why anyone else would. Unsettled and confused as a teen in the war-torn Middle East, she turns to partying, drugs, sex. Good gracious. The account is just a dry recitation of the facts; I did this, then I did this, then this happened, then I did that, then I did this.....
Complete disclosure: I did not finish this book. Way, way, way toooooo boring.

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2 of 3 people found this review helpful

5 out of 5 stars
By Susie on 09-30-13

Surviving Civil War

Darina Al-Joundi grew up wild in secular Beirut: Baudelaire, Clockwork Orange, dancing all night, fine lovers and finer Bordeaux.

When her father died, she sang Nina Simone's "Sinnerman," per his last wish, instead of the suras of the Koran.

This did not go over so well with her surviving family.

Life turned violent. Bombs started falling in Lebanon's civil war, and fundamentalism took over secular communities. The rest of her family weren’t as liberal as her father had been, and Darina was forcibly placed in an insane asylum.

Al-Joundi survived— and wrote this unforgettable memoir in exile in Paris. She is legendary throughtout the Middle East as a performer, and best known in Europe and North America for her hit play by the same title as the book.

Narrated by Lameece Issaq, with complete panache. This is one of my favorite audio productions of the year!

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3 of 5 people found this review helpful

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
5 out of 5 stars
By Cliente Amazon on 06-30-17

Great story

I picked this book because I hoped it would give me an insider perspective of Lebanon's history and culture.. and it did! if you know and enjoyed Persepolis, you will love this book.

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5 out of 5 stars
By Mr on 05-15-16

Listen to this!

Sharp and jazzy, this is a real standout literary voice. It reminds me of Sylvia Plath in places, especially towards the end with the mental hospital and her ‘redemption’ which, of course, is a false start. A very interesting book in what it has to say about culture, religion and being a free, independent woman.

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