Addtional Information

Imprint: Interlink Books

Edition: 1

Translator: Hartman , Michelle

Release date: 01/09/11

Category:

Always Coca-Cola

by Chreiteh, Alexandra

$ 25

Book Size: 5.25" x 8"

Pages: 144

Format: Hardback

ISBN: 9781566568739

About this book

The narrator of Always Coca-Cola, Abeer Ward (fragrant rose, in Arabic), daughter of a conservative family, admits wryly that her name is also the name of her father's flower shop. Abeer's bedroom window is filled by a view of a Coca-Cola sign featuring the image of her sexually adventurous friend, Jana. From the novel's opening paragraph- "When my mother was pregnant with me, she had only one craving. That craving was for Coca-Cola"- first-time novelist Alexandra Chreiteh asks us to see, with wonder, humor, and dismay, how inextricably confused naming and desire, identity and branding are. The names- and the novel's edgy, cynical humor- might be recognizable across languages, but Chreiteh's novel is first and foremost an exploration of a specific Lebanese milieu. Critics in Lebanon have called the novel "an electric shock."

About the author

Alexandra Chreiteh is pursuing a Ph.D. in comparative literature at Yale University. Michelle Hartman is an associate professor of Arabic and francophone literature at McGill University.

Reviews

"Savage and heady debut"¦Always Coca-Cola...embeds , in a deceptively simple story , a razor-sharp commentary on how young women in Beirut today are buffeted by the alternately conflicting and conspiring forces of hegemony , capitalism , and patriarchy- without , vitally , ever using such dry terms...we see the serious intention behind the gentle satire"¦Remarkably , given its short length- a little over a hundred pages- and its uncomplicated , at times even frothy , style , "Always Coca-Cola" comes off as a work of searing intensity that powerfully conjures the atmosphere of contemporary Beirut; it's a testament to translator Michelle Hartman's skill that a novel written mostly , but not entirely , in Modern Standard Arabic , the 'literary language' used in the Arab world , reads so naturally and humorously in English"¦" - Words without Borders "¢ "When university student Abeer Ward looks out the window of her Beirut bedroom , she sees a giant Coca-Cola ad across the street featuring her best friend Yana. The influence of the Occident persists not only in the billboard- and Abeer's Coke-bottle-shaped birthmark- but in the choices she and her friends make"¦Chreiteh's character development and figurative language is strong , and there are moments of humor."- Publishers Weekly "¢ "Chreiteh keeps up a lively dialogue (trialogue?) between the main characters , and eventually they all learn what it means to be 20-somethings in modern Beirut"¦Chreiteh is a fresh voice in the Arab world." - Kirkus Reviews "¢ "Lebanon is an Arab country that faces west. The Lebanese embrace Western institutions- i.e. , European cafe culture , American retail brands- but Lebanon remain within the Arab world"¦This makes cosmopolitan Beirut a most interesting hybrid: a westernized Arab city. It's against this backdrop that Alexandra Chreiteh and Michelle Hartman write Always Coca-Cola , a lightly sketched novella about young women in contemporary Lebanon"¦ Always Coca-Cola's best moments illustrate the fault-line between tradition and modernity"¦ The author's greatest talent may be her ability to use a little scene to make a powerful point"¦The femininity vs. feminism tension at the book's core could be examined just as easily in numerous settings , even certain subcultures within the U.S"¦ Always Coca-Cola is about the simmering tension between tradition and modernity as experienced by young middle-class Lebanese women. This is a great premise for a novel "¦an intelligent little book , and worth the read."- New York Journal of Books "¢ ""¦ a wonderful , head-shaking , humorous and sometimes sad journey through and around the forces menacing young women's lives and bodies , in Lebanon and beyond." - Egyptian Independent

About the Author

Alexandra Chreiteh is pursuing a Ph.D. in comparative literature at Yale University. Michelle Hartman is an associate professor of Arabic and francophone literature at McGill University.

Additional information

Author

Chreiteh, Alexandra

Author 2
Author 3
Edition

1

Inprint

Interlink Books

Pages

144

Type

HB

Illustrator
Illustrations
Editor
Translator

Hartman , Michelle

Age
Release date

01/09/11

Foreword by
Author Home

Lebanon & USA

Awards
Subtitle
Format

5.25" x 8"

Reviews

"Savage and heady debut"¦Always Coca-Cola…embeds , in a deceptively simple story , a razor-sharp commentary on how young women in Beirut today are buffeted by the alternately conflicting and conspiring forces of hegemony , capitalism , and patriarchy- without , vitally , ever using such dry terms…we see the serious intention behind the gentle satire"¦Remarkably , given its short length- a little over a hundred pages- and its uncomplicated , at times even frothy , style , "Always Coca-Cola" comes off as a work of searing intensity that powerfully conjures the atmosphere of contemporary Beirut; it's a testament to translator Michelle Hartman's skill that a novel written mostly , but not entirely , in Modern Standard Arabic , the 'literary language' used in the Arab world , reads so naturally and humorously in English"¦" – Words without Borders "¢ "When university student Abeer Ward looks out the window of her Beirut bedroom , she sees a giant Coca-Cola ad across the street featuring her best friend Yana. The influence of the Occident persists not only in the billboard- and Abeer's Coke-bottle-shaped birthmark- but in the choices she and her friends make"¦Chreiteh's character development and figurative language is strong , and there are moments of humor."- Publishers Weekly "¢ "Chreiteh keeps up a lively dialogue (trialogue?) between the main characters , and eventually they all learn what it means to be 20-somethings in modern Beirut"¦Chreiteh is a fresh voice in the Arab world." – Kirkus Reviews "¢ "Lebanon is an Arab country that faces west. The Lebanese embrace Western institutions- i.e. , European cafe culture , American retail brands- but Lebanon remain within the Arab world"¦This makes cosmopolitan Beirut a most interesting hybrid: a westernized Arab city. It's against this backdrop that Alexandra Chreiteh and Michelle Hartman write Always Coca-Cola , a lightly sketched novella about young women in contemporary Lebanon"¦ Always Coca-Cola's best moments illustrate the fault-line between tradition and modernity"¦ The author's greatest talent may be her ability to use a little scene to make a powerful point"¦The femininity vs. feminism tension at the book's core could be examined just as easily in numerous settings , even certain subcultures within the U.S"¦ Always Coca-Cola is about the simmering tension between tradition and modernity as experienced by young middle-class Lebanese women. This is a great premise for a novel "¦an intelligent little book , and worth the read."- New York Journal of Books "¢ ""¦ a wonderful , head-shaking , humorous and sometimes sad journey through and around the forces menacing young women's lives and bodies , in Lebanon and beyond." – Egyptian Independent