Product Details

University Press of Kentucky
Publish Date
6.3 X 9.1 X 0.9 inches | 1.0 pounds

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About the Author

Lena Mahmoud was nominated for Pushcart Prizes for her story "Al Walad" and her essay "The Psyche of a Palestinian-American Writer" and was shortlisted for the OWT Fiction Prize. Her work has appeared or is forthcoming in Sinister Guru, KNOT Magazine, Pulp Literature, Fifth Wednesday Journal, and Sukoon.


"Yusef and Isra's story is relevant for people worldwide. With poignant, beautiful writing, Mahmoud quickly draws readers into the novel, portraying all her characters with a sympathetic voice. A fantastic choice for book discussions and well worth a second reading." -- Library Journal (starred review)

"Mahmoud constructs a subversive story about love and marriage in her novel Amreekiya, a feminist Palestinian project that follows its headstrong lead, Isra, through struggle and loss. This is a tense examination of what a marriage is and how gendered expectations influence love and family. It is an intimate dissection of a relationship that exists in an unequal world.Isra is a brave, uncompromising heroine who fights back against what everyone tells her sheshould be. Her character is heartbreaking: a caged bird unable to break free. Mahmoud portrays the unsettling conflict between freedom and social imprisonment in Amreekiya, an unnerving novel that encourages questioning common assumptions, no matter how deep down they rest." -- Foreword Reviews

"Beautifully composed, the novel alternates between vignettes of Isra Shadi's childhood and her journey as a fledging adult. Through the voice of Isra, an emotionally abused yet fiercely determined Arab-American, author Lena Mahmoud conveys the fraught negotiations needed to assimilate into multiple circles of belonging while asserting one's individuality. Isra proves an endearing and strong-willed narrator." -- Al Jadid