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Available copies

  • 2 of 2 copies available at LARL/NWRL Consortium.
  • 2 of 2 copies available at Lake Agassiz Regional Library. (Show preferred library)

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0 current holds with 2 total copies.

Location Call Number / Copy Notes Barcode Shelving Location Status Due Date
Detroit Lakes Public Library KHA (Text) 33500013014923 Main Available -
Moorhead Public Library KHA (Text) 33500013014915 Main Available -

Record details

  • ISBN: 0374135738
  • ISBN: 9780374135737
  • Physical Description: pages cm
  • Edition: First American edition.
  • Publisher: New York : Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2019.

Content descriptions

Summary, etc.: A dogged, absurd quest through the nightmare of the Syrian civil war Khaled Khalifa's Death Is Hard Work is the new novel from the greatest chronicler of Syria's ongoing and catastrophic civil war: a tale of three ordinary people facing down the stuff of nightmares armed with little more than simple determination. Abdel Latif, an old man from the Aleppo region, dies peacefully in a hospital bed in Damascus. His final wish, conveyed to his youngest son, Bolbol, is to be buried in the family plot in their ancestral village of Anabiya. Though Abdel was hardly an ideal father, and though Bolbol is estranged from his siblings, this conscientious son persuades his older brother Hussein and his sister Fatima to accompany him and the body to Anabiya, which is--after all--only a two-hour drive from Damascus. There's only one problem: Their country is a war zone. With the landscape of their childhood now a labyrinth of competing armies whose actions are at once arbitrary and lethal, the siblings' decision to set aside their differences and honor their father's request quickly balloons from a minor commitment into an epic and life-threatening quest. Syria, however, is no longer a place for heroes, and the decisions the family must make along the way--as they find themselves captured and recaptured, interrogated, imprisoned, and bombed--will proveto have enormous consequences for all of them.

  • Booklist Reviews : Booklist Reviews 2018 December #1
    *Starred Review* A more challenging scenario than the one facing siblings Bolbol, Fatima, and Hussein in this powerhouse novel would be hard to imagine. The siblings' father has died, and his final wish was to be buried in his ancestral village in Syria's Aleppo region. In a country engaged in active civil war, though, the two-hour drive from their home in Damascus could cost the siblings their lives. Refusing to look away from its characters' challenges, the novel is clear-eyed in its presentation of living in a war zone. Many bodies are uncollected on roadsides and eaten by dogs. Is it potentially worth the siblings' own lives to prevent this fate for their father? At checkpoints, guards demand to see papers for the corpse—to some he is a traitor even while dead—and threats of imprisonment, bombing, and torture are real. Each with singular histories and needs, the siblings are living out the most existential of questions: What actually matters in a dangerous world? Winner of the Naguib Mahfouz Medal for Literature, Syrian author Khalifa (In Praise of Hatred, 2014) reaches readers with a style that is straightforward, true, and profound. Copyright 2018 Booklist Reviews.

Author Notes

Khaled Khalifa was born in 1964 in a village close to Aleppo, Syria. He has written numerous screenplays and is the author of several novels, including In Praise of Hatred, which was short-listed for the International Prize for Arabic Fiction, and No Knives in the Kitchens of This City, which won the Naguib Mahfouz Medal for Literature in 2013. He lives in Damascus, a city he has refused to abandon despite the danger posed by the ongoing Syrian civil war.

Leri Price is the translator of Khaled Khalifa’s In Praise of Hatred and No Knives in the Kitchens of This City, as well as literature from Egypt, Libya, Tunisia, Syria, and Saudi Arabia.

Subject: Civil War (Syria : 2011-)
Families Syria Fiction
Syria History Civil War, 2011- Fiction
Genre: History.
War stories.

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