Tuesday, July 13, 2021, 5:30 PM ET (please note earlier start time)
Fiction Book Group with Alexis
Discussion of Celestial Bodies
Led (virtually!) by former Greenlight general manager Alexis, our fiction book group meets monthly to discuss paperback fiction, reading broadly in contemporary fiction with the occasional diversion into classics. For July, the group discusses Jokha Alharthi’s Man Booker International Prize winner Celestial Bodies. In the village of al-Awafi in Oman, we encounter three sisters: Mayya, who marries after a heartbreak; Asma, who marries from a sense of duty; and Khawla, who chooses to refuse all offers and await a reunion with the man she loves, who has emigrated to Canada. These three women and their families, their losses and loves, unspool beautifully against a backdrop of a rapidly changing Oman, a country evolving from a traditional, slave-owning society into its complex present. Through the sisters, we glimpse a society in all its degrees, from the very poorest of the local slave families to those making money through the advent of new wealth.