Friday, August 6, 2010

Zoë Ferraris

From a Q & A with Zoë Ferraris about her new novel, City of Veils:

How has your presentation of life in Saudi Arabia developed since your first novel, Finding Nouf?

I wrote City of Veils to give a broader view of the country, because there’s so much going on there. The people are trying to adapt Western ideas and trends while cherishing their Islamic traditions. For example, in a beauty pageant in Riyadh, women are judged on their moral beauty—how they treat their parents, and so forth. Yet young people’s musical groups like the Spice Babes! perform to huge outdoor crowds, and the religious police can’t do anything about it.

What seems to be responsible for more relaxed attitudes in Saudi Arabia vis-à-vis Western culture?

Young people are becoming more open, because technological advances like cell phones, FaceBook, and Bluetooth have made communication easier and virtually unstoppable.

How then do today’s devout Muslim men and women deal with the strictures of shariya law, especially concerning relations between the sexes?

Many ...[read on]
Learn more about the book and author at Zoë Ferraris' website.

The Page 69 Test: Finding Nouf.

--Marshal Zeringue