I won this book from Goodreads First Reads.
I don't read Arabic at all, so this review is purely based on the English half. And I think something may have been lost in the translation. Some of the stories have odd phrases that no native English speaker would ever use. It also reminds me of why I usually prefer novels to short stories, especially contemporary literary ones. They always seem to end so abruptly and make me want to know more. That's even more true when you're given one chapter out of a novel, which is what at least two of these "stories" are.
On a cultural note, I was surprised by the amount of sex in these stories, which I would have thought would be more taboo in Muslim countries that we are at least led to believe are so morally uptight.
I entered to win this book because I read very little of writers who aren't American or British, and I wanted to see what kinds of things these younger Arab authors are writing. Some were very strange, and most too artsy for my taste. I mostly read for entertainment, and I don't like to have to work hard to figure our what is supposed to be a metaphor, and if so what it means.