Dancing Arabs | Review

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Photo by Voracious Shelf 



Dancing Arabs has officially joined its previous: The Catcher in the Rye, to my growing list of overrated books. For a book that used to be banned from Jordan for cursing and mocking King Hussein, I believe they should rethink banning it for being too shallow and spinning in closed circle. However, I thought when Sayed Kashua wrote the screenplay for its movie, he’d at least “CONSIDER” containing the main plot. Taking this silly thought into consideration, I was full of hopeful fantasies toward the book . But apparently the saying, “Don’t judge a book by its movie.” is true, vise versa in this case.

Being an Arab, I know exactly what the protagonist feels toward his family and society, though the book was written in 2002, yet everything the book has included is still applied so far; letting our parents decide what we should study and do with our lives, marrying someone from our clan, village or family and the list goes on. Nevertheless, what appears to intercede for the book is the fact that he showed real feelings toward his desire to become a Jew, to become a citizen. He wants peace, he wants Arabs (especially Palestinians) to cease being self-contradictory and have one fixed attitude towards things, and he surely wants them to cease being “Dancing Arabs”.

Personally, I felt extremely attached to his youngest brother’s personality. He took advantage of his broken tooth to lessen his communication with others, including his family members. He took off to Tel Aviv and bought himself a new identity. Unlike the protagonist who stayed in the village horsing around and being lousy, dependant kind of a person who only take pleasure of dreaming and hoping of becoming a Jew instead of achieving this hope.

However, I own a copy of the first edition of the book. It’s full of typos, but the style of writing was beautiful and coherent, he has that smooth way of telling a story without pushing me around irrelevant details which eases off my agony and lets me imagine for a minute being a Jew, who’s living in the other side, how my life would be, what are the qualities I might get just for being a Jew. And why we have to be us and them, no one can deny the fact that Zionists invaded Palestine, but according to the current circumstances, let’s not let the idea of peace and living together fade into oblivion, let’s have the terms of peace on the table to stop the bloodshed. Israel became reality we shouldn’t deny this, at least to ourselves.

Started Reading – May 1, 2017
Finished Reading – May 20, 2017
*I own a copy of the book.

The Metamorphosis | Review




When I started reading this short story, I was filled with prejudgments about it. But paragraph after paragraph, page after page, I came up to these conclusions (1) Houses of publishing, take advantage of dead authors works to translate them in a way that guarantee an implicit or explicit melancholy and dreadfulness meanings. For instance, when Dostoevsky finished one of his short stories, the publisher decided to make some adjustments in order to make the story more bleak and delightful to the readers, it’s when Dostoevsky sent her a letter preventing her from making any further adjustments to the story without his consent because what she did was making the protagonist inclined to suicide, which he was not. That’s why I never trust any translated work. (2) Why most of the readers are taken with idea of compliance with laws and regulations and how the characters are devoid of human feelings, I can’t deny any of that, it could be totally true. But why don’t we look at the other side of the story:

The mysterious insect Gregor had turned to, is inside each and every one of us; we turned to it whenever we were neglected, being bullied, being harassed, having mentality disorders, suicidal thoughts, being depressed, having communication problems, and the list goes on. Whatever the things or circumstances that could make us turn to that nauseous, terrifying and despicable insect Gregor had turned to.

It also could be the stages of the problems we face in our life. Starting from it being huge and irritating us and by time we might get used to its existence, to the point that we’d neglect it. Until the day comes and we can’t but say: enough is enough. And through it outside our life and move on. And how we actually deal with these problems is being reflected by Gregor’s family, their way of dealing with Gregor (the problem).

I believe that this specific work of Kafka is an open invitation for us to look at Gregor’s metamorphosis from a different angle each time we read it. And never stick to the stereotypical side of this story.

The characters on the other hand, are nearly fixed; Gregor manages to accept every situation has given to him, starting from his new roll in the family after his father losses his business, and being depended on as breadwinner for his family. Accepting a job that he dislikes yet a distrustful and overbearing boss. However, after Gregor’s metamorphosis he also shows acceptance to his new condition, and instead of freaking out or rebel on the current situation, he had only showed tolerance and never tried to stand up for himself or even to leave.

However, his sister’s character showed much development than Gregor’s. At first she used to love her brother, and when he transformed she kept on bringing him food that she thought he loves, when this failed she brought a large variety of food to see what fits his new situation, yet she cleaned his room (she did so temporarily; as she considered this new situation tentative and it will pass soon) but when time start passing, and there was no change on Gregor’s situation, and he started affecting her life badly, she showed lack of sympathy and grow up showing negligence toward him. Eventually, she decided to let go of him and persuaded her family to do so.

The general theme in the story was absurdity. From the first sentence to the last the story was filled with absurd events. Neither Gregor’s family, his office manager, the maids nor the boarders were horrified of his vision, there reaction toward what’s going on was beyond believing; it appeared as if they were used to seeing this, and it is just a disgusting and annoying part of their life might possibly happen. They had never asked for explanation or seeked an advice. Even Gregor himself was more concerned of catching the train for his job more than his metamorphosis. This absurdity implies that the characters to some degree are not surprised by the absurdity in their world.

If we tried to investigate the lexical meaning of Metamorphosis, we’d have found this:

1. formal a process in which something changes completely into something very different.
2. a process in which a young insect, frog etc changes into another stage in its development.

(From Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English, Entry: metamorphosis)

which means; this story is causing a transformation in the personality of its characters; they are either showing the slightest development or a major one. Same for the reader, one can not finish this story without having something changed in him. Wherefore, The Metamorphosis is an invitation for every one to actually metamorphose into something.

 Started Reading – May 27, 2017
Finished Reading – May 28, 2017
* I own a copy of the book. 
Team up

PDF Reader, OPS!


Hello guys, how you all are doing?
I know that nothing can defeat a book, its smell and texture -AHH I’m dying already- BUT, I sometimes face the problem of not finding some books I’m dying to read, it’s when I have to PDF them. Sooo, out of making it easier on you; I have some PDF books that I’ll be glade to send you to read if you want to.

All what you have to do is to contact me with the name of book/s you’d like me to send you, and you’ll have them as soon as I read the message (which usually takes 15 minutes). Moreover, I’ll be glade if you share with me your list of PDF books so I can “borrow” some haha.

  • I’ll update this list every time I got a new PDF Book.

Have a lovely day all.


  1. A History of European Art – Professor William Kloss
  2. American and European Works of Art


  1. A dimond as Big as the Ritz and Other Stories – F. Scott Fitzgerald
  2. A study in Scarlet – Arthur Conan Doyle
  3.  A Chirstmas Carol – Charles Dickens
  4. Doctor Faustos – Christopher Marlowe
  5. Litters to Milena – Franz Kafka
  6. Notes from the Underground – Fyodor Dostoyevsky
  7. The Black Cat – Edgar Allan Poe
  8. The Woman who Rode Away and Other Stories –   D. H. Lawrence
  9. Ulysses –  James Joyce
  10. Utopia – Thomas More
  11. Candide – Voltaire
  12. The Old Man and The Sea – Ernest Hemingway
  13. A Farewell to Arms – Ernest Hemingway
  14. The Sun Also Rises –  Ernest Hemingway
  15. الأساطير اليونانية و الرومانية


  1. How to Write a Business Plan – Mike McKeever
  2. How to Write Better Essays – Bryan Greetham
  3. Oxford Guide to English Grammar –  John Eastwood
  4. The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People: Powerful Lessons in Personal Change – Stephen R. Covey


  1. Gay & Lesbian Themes, Critical Survey of Poetry –  Rosemary M. Canfield Reisman (Editor)


  1. Solomon on Sex: Lessons on Love, Sex and Marriage from the Song of Solomon –  Kurt Trucksess

  2. The Crusades and the Christian World of the East: Rough Tolerance – Christopher MacEvitt

  3. Magic in ancient Egypt –  Geraldine Pinch
  4. Sex in the Ancient World from A-Z – john Younger


  1. Eat, Pray, Love –  Elizabeth Gilbert
  2. Girl in Translation – Jean Kwok
  3. 1Q84 – Haruki Murakami
  4. Love in the Time of Cholera -Marquez Gabriel Garcia
  5. The Wolves of Mercy Falls (Shiver) –  Maggie Stiefvater
  6.  The Bell Jar – Silvia Blath
  7. The Kite Runner – Khaled Hosseini
  8. Franny and Zooey – J.D. Salinger
  9. الضوء الأزرق – حسين البرغوتي
  10. الأرجوحة – محمد الماغوط
  11. المؤلفات الكاملة – نجيب محفوظ المجلد الخامسة


  1. Hegel’s Phenomenology of Spirit: An Introduction – Larry Krasnoff

  2. Jung: A Very Short Introduction – Anthony Stevens

  3. The Birth of Tragedy – Nietzsche
  4. Philosophy: A Very Short Introduction – Edward Craig
  5. Logic: A Very Short Introduction – Graham Priest
  6. Sophie’s World – Jostein Gaarder
  7. The Meaning of Truth –  William James

  8. The Art of Dying – Osho
  9. Beyond Good and Evil – Friedrich Nietzsche
  10. اسطورة سيزيف – البير كامو


  1. The Divine Drama of Love –  James A Fowler
  2. No Exit and Three Other Plays – Jean Paul Sartre
  3. The Words – Jean Paul Sartre
  4. Waiting for Godot – Samuel Beckett
  5.  ست شخصيات تبحث عن مؤلف – لويجي برانديلو


  1.  Selected Poems – Derek Walcott
  2. Leaves of Grass – Walt Whitman
  3. Selected Poems – Pablo Neruda
  4. The Collected Poems of Langston Hughes
  5. The Illiad – Homer
  6. The Odyssey – Homer
  7.  Love is a Dog From Hell – Charles Bukowski
  8. الأعمال الشعرية الكاملة (الجزء الأول ) – نزار قباني


  1. The Art of Seduction –  Robert Greene

  2. Thinking Skills – John Butterworth, Geoff Thwaites


  1.  Breaking the Spell: Religion as a Natural Phenomenon – Daniel C. Dennett
  2. God Is Not Great – Christopher Hitchens
  3. The God Delusion – Richard Dawkins
  4. Why I Am Not a Christian – Bertrand Russell
  5. Free will – Sam Harris


  1. The Selfish Gene – Richard Dawkins

Politic Science

  1. The Clash of Civilizations and the Remaking of World Order – Samuel P. Huntington


  1. Sociology: A Very  Short Introduction – Steve Bruce
  2. العرب وجهة نظر يابانية – نوبوأكي نوتوهارا
  3. رأس المال 1,2,3 – كارل ماركس
  4. طبائع الاستبداد ومصارع الاستعباد – عبد الرحمن الكواكبي


  1. We Should All Be Feminists – Chimamanda Ngozi

Intercultural Communication: Unity in Diversity | Review


WhatsApp Image 2017-04-26 at 5.26.09 PM
Photo by Voracious Shelf


We might spend our life thinking that communicating with other countries are going to be a piece of cake; especially if we “know” a lot about the culture we’re communicating with by knowing their cuisine, language, how they dress, their marriage ceremony, whatsoever. Achieving that by watching movies, series or befriending people form that culture. And when the time comes and we travel to that culture we’re admiring and believing that we know quite well, we’ll immediately face a cultural shock.

No matter how well you know a country, how good you are speaking their language, how many friends you have from that country, as long as you aren’t born there and raised their, your communication with that country will always be intercultural communication even, for instance, you’ve lived for twenty years there. However, what will change is the degree of which your communication is being held with the citizens: MOST intercultural communication or LEAST intercultural communication. And this is the whole concept of the book; to know exactly how our communication is going to be with cultures different than ours, and what possibly we might face though this communication

Debra Reece and Rula Quawas did such a great job discussing the difference between Intercultural Communication and Intracultural one and what’s in between: Interethnic/Interracial Communication, Cross-cultural Communication and International Communication. Based on this, they emphasized that the world are divided into two cultural patterns: Collectivistic Cultures and Individualistic Cultures. Whatever culture you were dealing with (your own or different than yours) some tools must be applied or taken into consideration in order to improve intercultural communication, such as: display of respect, orientation to knowledge, tolerance for ambiguity and so on.

After achieving this, we can safely come to the nine dimensions are used to describe the dominant of a cultural power, Robert. J. House called it GLOBE; which is an acronym for Global Leadership and Organizational Behavior Effectiveness. They illustrated that these dimensions differ from country pattern to another (i.e. some might have it high and others might have it low).

Moreover, they argued about the nature of identity: Cultural Identity, Social Identity and Personal Identity. Providing the stages of developing cultural identity. I must admit that the chapters I liked the most were: Cultural Biases; were they introduced us to Social Categorizing, Ethnocentrism, Stereotyping, Prejudice -linked with- Discrimination, and Racism. And Nonverbal Messages; which are EXTREMELY IMPORTANT to know while dealing with different cultures, because what’s suitable and accepted in your culture can be rude or disrespectful to the person in other cultural. However, this includes body movement: gestures, head movement, facial expression, eye behaviors and so on. All these are known as Kinesics, which have different types: emblems, illustrators, affect displays, regulators and finally adaptors.

When knowing and understanding all these, we’ll protect ourselves from facing cultural shock due to misunderstanding, having it escalated to cultural clash, then, cultural shock. It’s important for me to say that this amazing book helped me to understand different cultural, and that, “People are the same, only their habits differ.

Intercultural Communication: Unity in Diversity  by Debra Reece and Rula Quawas

April 25, 2017 – Finished Reading

* I own a copy of this book. 


Waiting for Godot | Review




I insisted to have my second read for Waiting for Godot linked with the first read for The Myth of Sisyphus. As Camus and Beckett both wrote under the genre of absurdity, and that the play -in my opinion- is the staged version of Camus’s book where his philosophical interpretations are embodying on the image of Vladimir and Estragon.

Whether you have decided to consider Godot as a tacit expression of God (which Camus did not recommend, neither do I) or to take it as generally as possible by including all the possible meanings of the word per se, based on the events of the play. One thing we should all agree upon;  is that Godot is an idea.  An idea in the minds of everyone, which varies from one person to another. Some of them will see Godot as god, and some of them will see it as the absurd, or the meaning of life, or love. And here lies the beauty of this wonderful masterpiece, its infinite interpretations and that it can’t set on one interpretation. 

One must feel the weight of nothingness and pointlessness in the play. And it is enough to fill your head with two questions; you’ll either ask yourself: what is this story about? OR, does the human condition have meaning? The answer of the first question requires you to read the play one more time to get the full image, but the answer of the second question is complex, and I am in the process of linking events with Camus’s interpretations. The play depicting the first type of suicide Camus has mentioned, the physical suicide, resulting from the absurdity. On the way to this suicide, Beckett reviews a set of proposed solutions to deceive committing suicide and is very close to the solutions Camus mentioned in The Myth of Sisyphus.

The folly of seeking a meaning, aimlessness of life and absurdity of existence are the three main themes in Waiting for Godot. When The Myth of Sisyphus unlearn the issue of how we should confront the absurdity, Waiting for Godot actually applied it; Camus suggested some possible ways to respond to the absurdity:

While Camus mentioned two ways of committing suicide (physical and philosophical suicide), Waiting for Godot concentrated only on the physical suicide; Didi and Gogo talked about killing themselves at the beginning of ACT I before they had entered the whirlpool of absurdity and they talked about it again but this time in a CERTAIN way as they discovered the pointlessness of waiting for Godot, yet they gave him benefit of the doubt before they hang themselves:

ESTRAGON. What about hanging ourselves? 
VLADIMIR. Hmm. It’d give us an erection.
ESTRAGON. An erection! 
VLADIMIR. With all that follows. Where it falls mandrakes grow. That’s why they shriek when you pull them up. Did you not know that?
ESTRAGON. Let’s hang ourselves immediately!

ESTRAGON. Why don’t we hang ourselves?
VLADIMIR. We’ll hang ourselves tomorrow. Unless Godot comes.
ESTRAGON. And if he comes? 
VLADIMIR. We’ll be saved.

Drama (becoming an actor)

Camus claims that you can face absurdity by becoming an actor and trying to live other people’s life and try to find the meaning in their stories. Beckett on the other hand, unlearn this thing by making Didi and Gogo act, also by actually acting this play on the stage, so the actors themselves can examine this way of confronting. 

VLADIMIR. Will you not play?
ESTRAGON. Play at what? 
VLADIMIR. We could play at Pozzo and Lucky.
ESTRAGON. Never heard of it. 
VLADIMIR. I’ll do Lucky, you do Pozzo

Another kind of art

This includes all kinds of art, but Camus suggested becoming a painter, this way will give you the chance to create art works to be a substituted of living this life. Singing is a kind of art and we’ll see Didi singing in the opining of ACT II:

Halts suddenly and begins to sing loudly.
A dog came in–
Having begun too high he stops, clears his throat, resumes:
A dog came in the kitchen And stole a crust of bread. Then cook up with a ladle And beat him till he was dead.

I can’t deny thinking in the following way while reading it for the first time. I adapted the idea says that Godot is god. In the play the place is an area that its name not mentioned, there is nothing in it but a leafless tree. Didi and Gogo come every day in an endless waiting for Godot (this doing is the rock that Sisyphus doomed to carry endlessly). This is similar to the idea of gathering before the Day of Resurrection in Islam, where all the people of the world are together in waiting to be told of their doings of “goodness and sins” in their life and are also waiting to see God, but he does not appear, and this situation will continue for years and years before he finally appears.

In the gathering day, no one recognizes the other, so you’ll see that Pozzo forget meeting Didi and Gogo, and the Boy also had forgotten that he met him, or if it was his brother who came in yesterday. The Boy also identify himself as the messenger for Mr. Godot, which made me think that he is a prophet; what is a prophet, but a messenger for god! Yet this “prophet” is a shepherd which rhymes well with what Prophet Mohammad was doing before he became a messenger. But in my second reading I was more concerned with Didi and Gogo strong bond of friendship, the implied political figure of Pozzo and most importantly, Lucky. Who in my opinion represents the “Acceptance” Camues talked about.

Didi and Gogo friendship

ESTRAGON. It’s not nice of you, Didi. Who am I to tell my private nightmares to if I can’t tell them to you?

What a line. This particular line shows the tight bond between them, and how transparent their friendship is. What kind of friends are we if we can’t discuss the smallest and largest, most ridiculous and deepest thoughts yet our fears to our closest friend? Not just that, Gogo also showed fear for his friend to be left alone if Gogo hanged himself first and succeeded, but Didi didn’t because the bough couldn’t bear his weight. But if Gogo went before Didi and the bough didn’t break, it means that it’s strong enough to hold Didi then it should be strong enough to hold Gogo too, because he’s the lighter one. In this way he’ll never let him alone and they’ll die together and be together:

ESTRAGON. Gogo light—bough not break—Gogo dead. Didi heavy—bough break—Didi alone.

Gogo and Didi point out the idea of embracing each other in many parts of the play. Remarkably, they haven’t said “huge me” not once, they have always said “embrace me”. Embracing and hugging are two different thing; when we hug, we are engaging in the physical act. But when we embrace on the other hand, we are not only hugging, we are embracing each other’s flows, sins, scars and goodness. How much are we in need to be embraced by someone, anyone?

Pozzo the master

Pozzo and his ‘menial’, Lucky. The power that Pozzo had on Lucky made him somehow finds a meaning for his life. Maybe Pozzo and Lucky were a metaphor for the political situation in the World War II. He also emphasized the repressive thinking of that era:

Pozzo. Let us not then speak ill of our generation, it is not any unhappier than its predecessors. (Pause.) Let us not speak well of it either. (Pause.) Let us not speak of it at all.

Lucky and the tree

When Didi and Gogo never seem to accept that Godot will never come and shift their concentration for something else. Lucky, however, was the only one that applied Camus’s accepting the absurd method. He’s carrying the burdens of humans that they can’t put down (lucky’s baggage full of sand) and when offered comfort he WILLINGLY went back to that burden and pick it up. He knows that his life is pointless and all this is a sheer absurd but he lives it anyway. He is the happy Sisyphus. 
The tree represents the lack of vitality. In the second ACT, Didi finds that four or five leafs have grown on the leafless tree. The tree seems that it started to accept the absurdity in which it’s planted in, when it finally accepted that, leafs started to grow on its boughs.


Waiting for Godot represents the sheer absurdity of this meaningless life, it discusses more than what I mentioned, and in every read you’ll discover something new, and look at it and to the absurdity itself differently. Make your reading for this book linked with The Myth of Sisyphus. 

ESTRAGON. Nothing to be done.

Waiting for Godot by Samuel Beckett

March 6, 2017 – Started Reading
March 8, 2017 – Finished Reading

* I don’t have a copy of the book.


The Forty Rules of Love | Review

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Photo by Voracious Shelf



I believe that each and every book you read, you read in a time when the story in the book is taking a place in your real story in life. I started reading this book while passing a crucial point in my life. I was battling the part in me who wants to stay and the other who wants to leave, battling skepticism and faith. My encounter with sufism came at the right time, where I could finally clear things up once and for all.

The book, the best description for it will be; a deep read about Islam before encountering a Muslim or Quran. I personally will start recommending this book for whomever wants to convert or know more about Islam. The essence of Islam lays in Sufism; it’s the deepest -fourth read- truest spot in the heart of Islam, as I like to say “Islam as it should be”. In a world full of preachers from every faith and kind, Sufism is where you can never get lost or be sceptic about anything.

I like to leave the pleasure of reading this book for you, as I don’t recommend talking about the book’s events. But make sure to read A LOT about Rumi and Shams of Tibriz before and after reading the book. Get to know them more and fall in love with them. Also, always keep in mind to be enlightened, and never ever judge anything or anyone. it’s not up to us to judge.

The Forty Rules of Love by Elif Shafak

January 12, 2017 – Started Reading
January 26, 2017 – Finished Reading

* I have a copy of the book.


The Basics: Philosophy | Review




Is it possible to consider philosophy a fun reading? Well, it is. Especially for this book; Nigel makes sure to let it be so. It’s brief, thought-provoking and easy-to-read. Highly recommend for freshmen in philosophy and, in my case, “People fond of philosophy but don’t know from where to start”.

Nigel discusses some of the highly controversial questions in philosophy and covers the most distinctive topics in the same field: God, Right and wrong, Politics, The external world, Science, Mind and Art. I must allude to the ease of vocabulary and structures he has chosen; we know that when it comes to philosophic vocabulary it’s all smoke and mirrors.

Nonetheless, it had some slight defects related to the content or let’s say to the definitions of arguments; I can clearly notes it’s just “A BASIC” yet it doesn’t have to be that short in defining arguments, it was like googling something and a very short definition ( three lines or less) from Wikipedia appears on the top right. However, Wikipedia gives you the feature of expanding the definition yet Nigel don’t. I was left high and dry at some points.

“My aim here is to give you the tool to think about philosophical issues yourselves rather than simply explain what certain great figures have thought about them.”

Another defect to mention; it did not cover two of the substantial topics known in philosophy: Free Will and Personal Identity (i.e. Free Will was mentioned under the chapter of God not as a chapter per se). However, it wasn’t hard-and it won’t be- neither for me nor for other readers to find the implied message the author wants us to find: philosophy is solely an art of observation. Every observer has its own unique way of interpreting the surrounding issues. Thus, any argument or any premise in that regard is subject to revoke. Nevertheless, there is not one argument went without several objections. Some arguments might sound utterly silly and offbeat, yet others provide food for thought, but on both ways it’s absolutely your call to follow what suits your way of observation or to simply revoke the arguments.

“Part of what they mean by this is that once a literary you text is made public, it is for the reader to interpret it: the author should no longer be considered to hold a privileged position in this respect … The meaning of text is created by the reader’s interpretation rather than the writer’s intentions.”

“In the end each, believer must judge whether or not his or her face is appropriate and genuine.”

“A god who allows such suffering for merely aesthetic purpose in order to appreciate it in the way one appreciates a work of art, sounds more like a sadist than the all- good deity described by theists. If this is the role suffering plays, then it makes God uncomfortably close to the psychopath who throws a bomb into a crowd in order to admire the beautiful patterns created by the explosion and the blood.”

The Basics: Philosophy by Nigel Warburton

March 28, 2017 – Started Reading
April 19, 2017 – Finished Reading

* I don’t have a copy of the book.