Saturday, August 23, 2008

Princess by Jean P. Sasson

Princess by Jean P. Sasson

Sultana is a princess in Saudi Arabia, a land of Arabs who believe that the male is the dominant sex and that females should not have opinions, be educated, or be able to choose. She doesn't give her real name for fear of retribution, but you wonder how people reading the book could not know that it's her when she has given so many of her life details. Sultana grew up in a household where her father preferred Sultana's brother. She resented the fact that she and her sisters were ignored and resolved to try and change the way her family, and possibly Saudi Arabia, viewed females. Sultana has a fiery spirit which affects all aspects of her life.

Stories are told of women who are raped then stoned to death for being "promiscuous", men who religiously abide by the Koran when they are at home but disregard it when they are abroad (then come back with stories of how western women are whores), and the tale of a woman who fell in love with a Christian and was then locked in a window-less room for the rest of her life.

Some of these stories are almost unbelievable. How humans could treat each other this way and then construe it as being the will of God is unbelievable. I couldn't help but think if the tables were turned for a week how things would change. No one deserves to be treated that way. Unfortunately, I don't think this book is going to do anything to bring about the changes that Sultana so desires.

First Line: "In a land where kings still rule, I am a princess."




Jeane said...

I read this book. I couldn't believe how they treated women- and men could get away with anything! I really admired Sultana's spirit.

Anonymous said...

Hi, I am a big fan of "Princess" and I enjoyed reading your review. The book is fascinating and you described it wonderfully. This is the rare type of book that is equally fascinating as it is educational. The author, Jean Sasson went out of her way to make sure of that in her writings because I learned so much about this far-away land and culture. I would also highly recommend reading all of the books in the Princess trilogy (Princess Sultana's Daughters and Princess Sultana's Circle) as they all compliment one another.

Anonymous said...

I am a big fan of Jean Sasson's "Princess" books (as well as all of her books) because they are all so interesting and life-affirming.

I just read that Jean Sasson has a new "Princess" book that will be published later this month on Aug. 28th, titled "Princess, More Tears to Cry". I cannot wait to read it!! I am so excited because this is the first book in the "Princess" series in several years and also because Princess Sultana is so fascinating to read about.

I love reading about Sultana's family, especially her daughters because they are so different and unique from one another. She has two daughters and they are like night and day.

The cover of the new "Princess, More Tears to Cry" book is so beautiful, too. It's of a women with a red veil over her face and a golden and pink sequins coronet. Jean Sasson's books always have such great covers that match their beautifully written stories. (I guess in this rare instance, we can judge a book by it's cover!)

I just pre-ordered "Princess, More Tears to Cry" on Kindle so I can have it the day it comes out!! I know that I will read it within a day or two because I always zip through all of Jean Sasson's books (they are so enthralling).

You can see the cover of the new "Princess, More Tears to Cry" book here (as well as the UK edition of the book which is just as beautiful) on my LiveJournal page: