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Finding Nouf
Zoe Ferraris
Adult Fiction FERRARI

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From Publishers' Weekly:

A finely detailed literary mystery set in contemporary Saudi Arabia, Ferraris's debut centers on Nouf ash-Shrawi, a 16-year-old girl who disappeared into the desert three days before her marriage and has been found dead, several weeks pregnant. Palestinian Nayir al-Sharqi who lives in Jeddah and works occasionally for the rich Shrawi family, is asked by them to investigate Nouf's death discreetly. Nayir, a conservative Muslim and an outsider because of his nationality, his class and his large stature, is wary of traversing the wide gulf between Saudi men's and women's worlds, and is encouraged by his friend Othman, an adopted son of the Shrawis, to seek out the help of Katya Hijazi, Othman's fiance. Katya has a Ph.D. and is employed in the women's section of the state medical examiner's office. As Nayir and Katya's investigation progresses, it becomes clear that at least one of the Shrawis has something to hide. Ferraris, who has lived in Saudi Arabia, gets deep inside Nayir's and Katya's very different perspectives, giving a fascinating glimpse into the workings and assumptions of Saudi society. As a mystery, it's fairly well-turned, but it's the characters and setting that sparkle. (June) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

From Library Journal:

Sixteen-year-old Nouf ash-Shrawi, daughter of a wealthy Saudi Arabian family, mysteriously disappears and is eventually found drowned in the desert. Was she kidnapped, or did she run away-and if the latter, why? Nouf's brother, Othman, asks his friend Nayir Sharqi, a local desert guide, to find out what happened to his sister. Nayir's investigation leads him into unknown territory-notably, the secret realm of women in a segregated Middle Eastern society. In an unusual partnership that challenges his traditional ideas, Nayir works on the case with Othman's fiancee, a laboratory technician in the medical examiner's office. Ferraris's debut novel gives a fascinating peek into the lives and minds of devout Muslim men and women while serving up an engrossing mystery. Ferraris, an American, lived in Saudi Arabia in the early 1990s with her then-husband and his extended family, Saudi-Palestinian Bedouins. Highly recommended.-Sarah Conrad Weisman, Corning Community Coll. Lib., NY (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

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main characters Nayir al-Sharqi
Desert guide; investigating the death of a pregnant teenager; an outsider because of his nationality and class.

Katya Hijazi
Has a Ph.D.; works at the state medical examiner's office; helping Nayir investigate the death of her fiance's sister, a pregnant teenager.
Lab technician

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