Alif the Unseen

Alif the Unseen

Paperback

By (author) G. Willow Wilson

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  • Publisher: Corvus
  • Format: Paperback | 320 pages
  • Dimensions: 149mm x 210mm x 40mm | 504g
  • Publication date: 1 September 2012
  • Publication City/Country: London
  • ISBN 10: 0857895672
  • ISBN 13: 9780857895677
  • Edition statement: Export and Airside ed
  • Sales rank: 218,002

Product description

This is a compelling and bewitching first novel, perfect for book groups, that mixes old world magic with modern adventure. Welcome to the Empty Quarter, the domain of Djinn, ghouls, demons and the effrit who take the shapes of beasts. You used to walk among us, and we among you. Now things are different. Now we are Unseen. Alif is a half-Arab, half-Indian, 23-year-old hacker working in the Arab Emirates. His job is to provide security to enemies of the Arab states, ranging from pornographers to militant Islamists. Alif has fallen in love with the beguiling Intisar, an aristocratic woman he meets online. But their budding love affair is cruelly ended when her father arranges a marriage for her with a man of her class...A man who turns out to be the state's leading censor, a shadowy and powerful figure known only as 'the Hand'. As their final communication, Intisar sends the heartbroken Alif a mysterious old book. Bound in what looks like human skin, and titled "The Thousand and One Days", Alif soon realizes that this token of affection is actually a dangerous source of old world magic. And as the keeper of this amulet - this Djinn-penned tome of secrets - Alif is about to become a wanted fugitive from both the corporeal and the celestial worlds...It is suitable for a range of readers, from fans of Neal Stephenson to Salman Rushdie to Audrey Niffenegger to Scarlett Thomas.

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Author information

G. Willow Wilson was born in New Jersey in 1982. After graduating with a degree in History and coursework in Arabic language and literature, she moved to Cairo, where she became a contributor to the Egyptian opposition weekly Cairo Magazine until it closed in 2005. She has written for politics and culture blogs across the political spectrum, and has previously written a graphic novel, Cairo, illustrated by M. K. Perker, and a series of comics based on her own experiences, for D.C. Comics.

Review quote

"* 'Driven by a hot ionic charge between higher math and Arabian myth, G. Willow Wilson conjures up a tale of literary enchantment, political change, and religious mystery. Open the first page and you will be forced to do its bidding: To read on.' - Gregory Maguire, author of Wicked"