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The Bridges of Constantine is a poignant fresco of Algeria over the last 50 years, a searing love story and a hymn to a lost city. Khaled, a former revolutionary in the Algerian war of liberation has been in self-exile in Paris for two decades, disgusted by the corruption that now riddles the country he once fought for. He has become a celebrated painter, and at the opening of one of his exhibitions, Hayat, the daughter of his old revolutionary commander, unexpectedly reenters Khaled's life. Hayat had been just a child when he last saw her, but she has now become a seductive young novelist. Khaled is consumed with passion for her, and she comes to embody the homeland and the city he still grieves for - the city he paints over and over again in his canvases. Through Hayat, his past is breathed back into life and he at last begins to confront his feelings about Algeria. But for Hayat, as elusive as she is tender, the question of what one should yearn for is not so simple, and the choices she makes will have devastating consequences for them both.
The first novel in an award-winning, bestselling trilogy that spans Algeria's tumultuous recent history, The Bridges of Constantine is a lyrical and heartrending love story about loss and remembrance, exile and belonging.
Bloomsbury Publishing PLC
Number of Pages
Remarkable, insightful ... The elegiac quality is present not just in the themes, but also in the astonishingly poetic language throughout . I stopped and marvelled every few pages ... This is one of the richest and most evocative books that I have read all year, I only hope we don't have to wait too long for the two sequels to The Bridges of Constantine to be published in English. The Arab-speaking world shouldn't get to keep Mosteghanemi's novels all to itself Independent A window into a different world Daily Mail Mosteghanemi is a good storyteller, and her plot picks up when it moves to the Maghreb. She delivers a scathing portrait of Algeria's corrupt leadership Independent Ahlem has carved a place for herself as one of the most important writers of the Arab world Youssef Chahine, Egyptian director, winner of the Cannes Film Lifetime Achievement Award