One Thousand and One Nights
One Thousand and One Nights are the never-ending stories told by Shahrazad under sentence of death to King Shahrayar. Maddened by the discovery of his wife’s orgies, King Shahrayar vows to marry a virgin every night and kill her in the morning. To survive, his newest wife Shahrazad spins a web of tales each night, leaving the King in suspense when morning comes, prolonging her life for another day.
Gathered from India, Persia and across the great Arab empire, these mesmerising stories tell of the real and the supernatural, love and marriage, power and punishment, wealth and poverty, and the endless trials and uncertainties of fate. Retold by Hanan al-Shaykh, One Thousand and One Nights are revealed in an intoxicating new voice.
Magical ... bursting with jinnis and mischief * Donna Tartt, The Times * A treat and a trap for story lovers ... al-Shaykh has rendered nineteen little masterpieces into a wondrously warm, ribald and hilarious concoction, reminding us of how bang up to date these stories can be * Hanif Kureishi, Guardian * A treasure box of stories ... [they] link and loop and ensnare their readers * Daniel Hahn, Independent * What a woman!!! What a storyteller!!! * Marjane Satrapi, author of Persepolis * One of the finest writers of her generation * Financial Times * A book for grown-ups interested in rediscovering the One Thousand and One Nights in all its bawdy, violent glory. It is captivating * Daily Mail * Charming ... Al-Shaykh brings her tales to life with a wonderful earthy immediacy, informal and intimate ... Al-Shaykh's variations and narrative choices concentrate and focus the stories on the erotic passions and struggles of women and men ... [Shaharazad's] is the speech of freedom, of what is marvelous, unforeseeable, and possible * New York Review of Books *
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