Immortality of spirit, rebellion, and fear

Book Review By Nour Shalghin

Issue #1 - Jul 25th, 2014



This review attempts to shed light on a Syrian novel, which received a partially pessimistic response after its publication. Through consequent negative discussions, many came to misunderstand some key elements of the novel. The author’s words summarise his incentive, passion, and loyalty to Immortality – all of which are features of the book from cover to cover. The distinguished style of the author describes the southern region of Syria (Daraa) in which he critically analyses and explains the region in minute detail, which was the cradle of the great Syrian revolution in 1925 against French colonialism. The region is the novels hero, besides many of the characters that defined its features – which is carried through to the reader with unique courage, while others expressed their dislike on the website Good Reads wryly commenting on the novel and its author. Either way, it is difficult to directly compare the novel to current affairs in Syria, and while its features may have highlighted deep issues of Syrian liberation from handcuffs over the years, it remains a reasonable attempt to predict the great transformation of Syria in 2011 which was close to the novel’s publication. The novelist Fadi Azzam returns to his mantra of hope despite the quasi destruction of his biography: “Words render us free, for every time a place or time is destroyed the tortured seek refuge in words, granting them hope and solace.