Archives for Middle East history

Book review: The Photographer’s Wife

The smell & heat of Jerusalem rises off the page. Suzanne Joinson has travelled to, lived in and worked in a number of Middle East countries and this shows in her fiction. Here, she creates a Jerusalem so vivid you can feel it on your skin. This is the story of an eleven year old girl, Prue, as she grows up in 1920s Jerusalem with an absent mother and a father who lets her run wild, and the people she encounters. As a child she observes much, lurking in the shadows at her father’s parties. The political tensions swirl as the country recovers from the Great War and the next is anticipated. Prue’s father, a city architect, employs a British pilot to overfly the area and provide him with reconnaissance photographs. In Jerusalem, the pilot Willie finds Eleanora, the girl he loved and lost in Britain before the Great War. Now his body bears the burn scars of his war, while she lives in Jerusalem and is married to an Arab photographer. So there are political tensions and romantic tensions, both underpinned by the use of photography to reveal or conceal the truth. In the second strand of the story,
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