Synopses & Reviews
A young woman named Maryam wakes from a disturbing, violent dream to find herself in a bed in a strange apartment in Cairo, rather than in her dormitory room where she fell asleep. With this enigmatic scene, Mansoura Ez Eldin begins an eerie tale of a woman cut loose from her world and struggling to reconnect the tenuous links to her former life.On her own in the city, she can find no way to contact her former roommate, who has now vanished, or her boyfriend, a journalist who seems to have left no trace of his existence. His phone is out of service, his employer has no record of him, and even his byline has disappeared from old newspapers she has kept. From Cairo, the narrative flashed back to the country villa of Maryam s wealthy family, where grief and madness lurked between the cracks of her childhood.Maryam s ever more desperate attempts to recapture the familiar world she once inhabited reveal a Gothic tale reminiscent of Poe or Palahniuk. A haunting allegory with a surprising ending, Maryam s Maze is an imaginative first novel by one of the most promising members of Egypt s vibrant new literary generation.
Maryam??'s Maze is an enigmatic novel by one of the most promising authors of a vibrant new generation of Egyptian writers. Set in the house of Yusuf El Tagi, where much of the story??'s action unfolds, Maryam??'s Maze relates the story of a woman struggling to find her way through the confusion of the world around her. Using the literary device of the ???double???, Maryam??'s Maze narrates a story that on one level touches on universal human emotions. At the same time, however, the inner maze of dreams and memories in which the young Maryam finds herself finds greater resonance in issues of modern Egyptian life. Echoing themes found in her earlier short fiction, Mansoura Ez-Eldin has woven a haunting allegorical tale that only reveals its real meaning to the reader at the end of the novel. With its precision of language and distinctive personal vision, Maryam??'s Maze represents a unique contribution to the corpus of contemporary Egyptian fiction.