Egyptian edition of 2020 Arabic Booker winning novel to be published

Mohammed Saad , Sunday 26 Apr 2020

Algerian novelist Abdelouahab Aissaoui won the $50,000 Arabic Booker prize; English translation of his novel expected soon

Spartan Court
Egyptian edition of 2020 Arabic Booker winning novel to be published

Egyptian bookstore Tanmeya has announced that it will be releasing an Egyptian edition of Abdelouahab Aissaoui's 2020 Arabic Booker winning novel, Al-Diwan Al-Isparti (The Spartan Court).

The Algerian novelist won the $50,000 award 14 April. An English translation of his novel is expected soon.

Tanmeya said it will release an Egyptian edition of the novel at an affordable price. Tanmey has published Arabic Booker winning novels in the last four years.

The Spartan Court follows the interconnected lives of five characters in Algiers from 1815 to 1833. The first character, Dupond, is a French journalist covering the colonial campaign against Algeria. The second, Caviard, is a former soldier in Napoleon’s army who finds himself a prisoner in the city and later becomes a planner for the colonial campaign.

The other three Algerian characters have different attitudes to Ottoman and French colonial powers. Ibn Mayyar thinks that politics is a means of building relationships with the Ottomans and even the French, whilst Hamma Al-Sallaoui believes that revolution is the only means of achieving change.

The fifth character, Douja, is suspended somewhere between the others. She witnesses the transformation of Algiers helplessly and is forced to become a part of it, for one must live according to the city’s rules, or leave. 

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