Antiquity Street

Rami, Sonia

Published by Farrar Straus Giroux, 1992
ISBN 10: 0374105340 / ISBN 13: 9780374105341
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New York. 1992. Farrar Straus Giroux. 1st American Edition. Very Good In Dustjacket. 242 pages. hardcover. Jacket art courtesy of the author.Jacket design by Honi Werner. ISBN: 0374105340. inventory # 17080. FROM THE PUBLISHER - A Young Egyptian woman studying at Harvard returns home to Cairo to visit her ailing father, a distinguished former diplomat and a member of the privileged Turkish-Egyptian upper class. She finds the sedate and decorous household of her family subtly changed: attending her father is a handsome orderly, a flamboyant dandy named Alex whom her mother has ‘found’ on Antiquity Street, in the poor section of the city. Even after the young woman discovers Alex’s secret life, she remains in love with him. Her family, predictably, is horrified by her affair with Alex; more ambiguous is her own consternation, the part desire, part dread summoned in her by this ‘poor Greek’ so little her equal in education, taste, and class. In sensual language that evokes the powerful exoticism of Cairo and Alexandria as deftly as do the novels of Lawrence Durrell, Antiquity Street movingly explores the persistence of the past in a changing present. For the young woman’s father - the aristocratic pasha - and for her family, the post-Nasser era has meant increasing isolation and loss of prestige: they recall the past with nostalgia. For Alex, the past is something to be desperately concealed and ardently reinvented. The articulate, willful, daring woman at the center of this unusual love story is torn between these two versions of Egypt, between her persisting devotion to her family and her passion for Alex. It is the remarkable achievement of Antiquity Street to record that struggle with persuasive candor and feeling. Bookseller Inventory #

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Synopsis: Returning from her studies at Harvard to the home of her ailing father in Cairo, an Egyptian woman becomes infatuated with the handsome orderly attending to her father, a man who is secretly a homosexual prostitute

From Kirkus Reviews: Life in Cairo and Alexandria is vividly evoked in this first novel from Egyptian writer Rami--but not vividly enough to compensate for an improbable protagonist and a theme that, in trying to mean so much, doesn't mean much at all. When the narrator, a young woman studying at Harvard, hurries home to Cairo because Dad--a former bigwig, a pasha, in pre-Nasser days--is desperately ill, she's surprised to find a young man, Alex, ensconced in her aristocratic family. For Alex is a Greek from one of the poorest quarters of Cairo--Antiquity Street--whose only claim to distinction is his white skin. But Alex is also a charmer, able to bewitch men, women, and animals. Our heroine-- whose less-than-savory past is littered with a variety of sexual adventures, including a long-term one with an uncle who paid her extremely well--is soon smitten. Either because the story takes place pre-AIDS--the exact time is never clear--or, more likely, because that disease would be inconvenient for the plot, she isn't worried that Alex is also a homosexual hooker. She briefly moves into his seamy apartment; throws in lots of stories about the good old days when the poor knew their place; makes side-trips to Alexandria and the desert; and muses on the mystery she senses behind Alex's moodiness. When Alex becomes ill and dies, she at last learns the truth. Not only Alex but his golden curls were not exactly what they appeared when she first caught sight of his ``long-red silk scarf dancing about his gracefully modelled limbs.'' But no problem: ``thanks to him, I had been able to recover the blurred childhood images which Nasser had somehow tarnished--stolen from me.'' Good on local color and custom, but the rest is a tawdry muddle. Despite the claim, this is no competition to Lawrence Durrell's still peerless Alexandria Quartet. -- Copyright ©1992, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.

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Bibliographic Details

Title: Antiquity Street
Publisher: Farrar Straus Giroux
Publication Date: 1992
Binding: hardcover
Book Condition: Very Good In Dustjacket
Edition: 1st Edition.

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Rami, Sonia
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Book Description Farrar, Straus & Giroux. Hardcover. Condition: Good. A copy that has been read, but remains in clean condition. All pages are intact, and the cover is intact. The spine may show signs of wear. Pages can include limited notes and highlighting, and the copy can include previous owner inscriptions. At ThriftBooks, our motto is: Read More, Spend Less. Seller Inventory # G0374105340I3N00

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Book Description Farrar Straus & Giroux, Gordonsville, Virginia, U.S.A., 1992. Hard Cover. Condition: Fine. Dust Jacket Condition: Very Good. First Edition. 1992 Book Club Hardcover edition. The dustjacket is only mildly scuffed with all pages intact and legible. Good reading copy. Clean. No store stamps. --- HERE'S THE FIRST FEW SENTENCES --- --- I think of Alex always as I first saw him, darting across the corridor that separated our private inner quarters from the reception rooms, his long red silk scarf dancing about his gracefully modeled limbs. So this handsome young man was the "pauvre Grec" Mother had discovered under some tumbledown roof across the bridge on Antiquity Street, and brought home with her to care for "le pacha," as she liked to refer to Father. Seller Inventory # 4522

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Book Description Farrar Straus & Giroux (T), 1992. Hardcover. Condition: Good. Satisfaction 100% guaranteed. Seller Inventory # mon0000870122

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Book Description Farrar Straus & Giroux, 1992. Hardcover. Condition: Good. Dust Jacket Condition: Good. First Edition. 242 pages; ex-library with usual markings, torn ffep, some light edge wear to boards. Seller Inventory # kb015256

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Book Description FARRAR, STRAUS & GIROUX, NY, 1992. HARDCOVER. Condition: FINE. Dust Jacket Condition: FINE. FIRST EDITION. Seller Inventory # 018831

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Sonia Rami
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Book Description Farrar Straus & Giroux (T), 1992. Hardcover. Condition: Good. Dust Jacket Condition: Good. Returning from her studies at Harvard to the home of her ailing father in Cairo, an Egyptian woman becomes infatuated with the handsome orderly attending to her father, a man who is secretly a homosexual prostitute. Book. Seller Inventory # 123475443

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Book Description Farrar Straus & Giroux, New York, 1992. Hardcover. Condition: Very Good. First Edition. Very Good 0.8 x 6.2 x 8.8 inches. Condition very good in cream boards with purple cloth spine, DJ very good in protective mylar cover, clean tight 1st edition, like new. From Publishers Weekly: First novelist Rami has written an atmospheric tale of a complicated love affair. Visiting her upper-class family in Cairo after years at Harvard, the narrator finds her father, a pasha and a former diplomat, weakened by age and an accident. Caring for him is a new orderly: Alex, a charming but troubled Greek. She is immediately beguiled by his mystery, his joie de vivre and his strange, not always pleasant worldview. Crossing strict cultural and class boundaries, they proceed to have an affair, to elim dangler the drama of which is carefully modulated. As Alex continues to work as a male prostitute, the narrator's love for him borders on obsession. Their forbidden romance affords a window on a changing Egypt, where once-absolute distinctions have blurred and the aristocratic values of the narrator's parents are gradually losing their force. In a celebratory blend of words and place, Rami intensely and effectively evokes an exotic world and a fervent emotional state. An Egyptian, Rami lives in Cairo. Copyright 1992 Reed Business Information, Inc. Seller Inventory # 003231

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