The Nomad: Diaries of Isabelle Eberhardt
By Isabelle Eberhardt
Why this book?
Isabelle Eberhardt was born in Switzerland in 1877, and against all odds made her way, solo, to Algeria in the 1890s, where she converted to Islam, dressed as a young man, and travelled widely. But this is just the headline—her life was full of lovers, both open and clandestine, assassination attempts, and remarkable adventures. She died without having published anything, at the age of 27, in a flash flood. But she left voluminous diaries and other manuscripts, which were published posthumously and translated a number of times. One of the most intrepid of the Victorian women travelers, she wrote on a trip back to Europe: “Now more than ever do I realize I will never be content with a sedentary life, that I will always be haunted by thoughts of a sun-drenched elsewhere.”
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