10 books like The Shell

By Moustafa Khalifa, Paul Starkey,

Here are 10 books that authors have personally recommended if you like The Shell. Shepherd is a community of 7,000+ authors sharing their favorite books with the world.

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Origins

By Amin Maalouf,

Book cover of Origins: A Memoir

I read Maalouf's book many years ago and it remains one of the best books I have ever read about identity. It helps that he is a gifted writer and that Maalouf's story is so compelling.

Origins

By Amin Maalouf,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Origins as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Origins, by the world-renowned writer Amin Maalouf, is a sprawling, hemisphere-spanning intergenerational saga.

Set during the last quarter of the nineteenth century and the first quarter of the twentieth, in the mountains of Lebanon and in Havana, Cuba, Origins recounts the family history of the generation of Maalouf's paternal grandfather, Boutros. Why did Boutros, a poet and educator in Lebanon, travel across the globe to rescue his younger brother, Gebrayel, who had settled in Havana?

Maalouf is an energetic and amiable narrator, illuminating the more obscure corners of late Ottoman nationalism, the psychology of Lebanese sectarianism, and the dynamics of…


Arabian Love Poems

By Bassam K. Frangieh, Nizar Qabbani, Clementina R. Brown

Book cover of Arabian Love Poems

Damascus-born Nizar Qabbani, a lawyer by training, abandoned a career in diplomacy in the late 1960s to become one of the Arab world’s most beloved poets. Both his sensual and political poems carry seeds of defiance, rebellion and a quest for liberation from autocratic institutions and rigid social norms. This edition reproduces Qabbani’s own handwritten text of the selected poems.

Arabian Love Poems

By Bassam K. Frangieh, Nizar Qabbani, Clementina R. Brown

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Arabian Love Poems as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

This translation of Nizar Kabbani's poetry is accompanied by the striking Arabic texts of the poems, penned by Kabbani especially for this collection. Kabbani was a poet of great simplicity - direct, spontaneous, musical, using the language of everyday life. He was a ceasless campaigner for women's rights, and his verses praise the beauty of the female body, and of love. He was an Arab nationalist, yet he criticized Arab dictators and the lack of freedom in the Arab world.


We Crossed a Bridge and It Trembled

By Wendy Pearlman,

Book cover of We Crossed a Bridge and It Trembled: Voices from Syria

Pearlman expertly, delicately and lovingly assembles elements from the stories and journeys of close to 90 Syrians into a mosaic “mapped onto Syria’s historical trajectory from authoritarianism to revolution, war, and exile” as she explains in the introduction. For me there are echoes of Maalouf’s Origins in this book: More than a hundred years later and Syrians and Levantines are still having to flee their homelands because of tyranny, conflict and political and social upheaval. Pearlman is an accomplished professor at Northwestern University who speaks Arabic and has spent more than 20 years studying and living in the Middle East. Her expertise and empathy shine through in a book that gives us a chance “to listen to actual Syrians, as human beings,” as she says.

We Crossed a Bridge and It Trembled

By Wendy Pearlman,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked We Crossed a Bridge and It Trembled as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

LONG-LISTED FOR THE CARNEGIE MEDAL

Reminiscent of the work of Nobel Prize winner Svetlana Alexievich, an astonishing collection of intimate wartime testimonies and poetic fragments from a cross-section of Syrians whose lives have been transformed by revolution, war, and flight.

Against the backdrop of the wave of demonstrations known as the Arab Spring, in 2011 hundreds of thousands of Syrians took to the streets demanding freedom, democracy and human rights. The government's ferocious response, and the refusal of the demonstrators to back down, sparked a brutal civil war that over the past five years has escalated into the worst humanitarian…


A Woman Is No Man

By Etaf Rum,

Book cover of A Woman Is No Man

In a 2019 interview with NPR, Etaf Rum—the daughter of Palestinian immigrants who was born and raised in Brooklyn, New York—said one of her struggles in writing the book was the fear that she was in a way confirming stereotypes about Arabs and Middle Easterners, including “oppression, domestic abuse, and terrorism.” Thankfully Rum overcame these struggles to deliver a courageous, beautiful, and incredibly authentic debut novel that follows the lives of three generations of Palestinian-American women trying to find their voices and identities within the confines of patriarchal and conservative milieus. In a way, the struggles of Rum and her characters mirror the battles that young people throughout the Middle East have been waging against tyranny and oppression since the start of the Arab Spring in 2010.

A Woman Is No Man

By Etaf Rum,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked A Woman Is No Man as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

A The Millions Most Anticipated Book of 2019

"Sometimes heroism is loud and dramatic. Other times, it is daring to listen to that quiet voice within and having the courage to follow it. In this story, we see inside the lives of three generations of Palestinian women living in America, struggling and suffering to hear that voice. Etaf Rum has done a great service by sharing these voices with us." -Shilpi Somaya Gowda, New York Times Bestselling Author of SECRET DAUGHTER and THE GOLDEN SON

Three generations of Palestinian-American women living in Brooklyn are torn between individual desire and the…


Made to Crave

By Lysa TerKeurst,

Book cover of Made to Crave: Satisfying Your Deepest Desire with God, Not Food

What would happen if you started listening to your cravings instead of trying to silence them? If you’re tired of the same old messages of eat less and move more, this book is what you’ve been missing. You know “how to” get healthy… but now there’s finally a book to help you find your “want to” - the lasting emotional and spiritual motivation to meet your goals and stay healthy.

The reality is we were made to crave. Craving isn’t a bad thing. But we must realize God created us to crave more of him. Many of us have misplaced that craving by overindulging in physical pleasures instead of lasting spiritual satisfaction. New York Times bestselling author of It’s Not Supposed to Be This Way, Uninvited, and The Best Yes, Lysa TerKeurst, invites you to find the missing link between a woman’s desire to be healthy and the spiritual empowerment…

Made to Crave

By Lysa TerKeurst,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Made to Crave as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

What would happen if you started listening to your cravings instead of trying to silence them? If you're tired of the same old messages of eat less and move more, this book is what you've been missing. You know "how to" get healthy... but now there's finally a book to help you find your "want to"- the lasting emotional and spiritual motivation to meet your goals and stay healthy.

The reality is we were made to crave. Craving isn't a bad thing. But we must realize God created us to crave more of him. Many of us have misplaced that…


Acts and Omissions

By Catherine Fox,

Book cover of Acts and Omissions

Catherine Fox is intimately familiar with the nuances of the Church of England. She writes about them with wit and affection, and she’s dependably funny in this tale of a married bishop who doesn’t want to look too closely at why he’s quite so patient with his disaster of a chauffeur. The Lindchester series is ongoing, and I’m one of many followers who read along to share the joys and sorrows of the diverse, expanding, and delightful cast of characters. This is the place to start, though.

Acts and Omissions

By Catherine Fox,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Acts and Omissions as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Chosen as a Guardian Book of 2014


Silence

By Shusaku Endo, William Johnston (translator),

Book cover of Silence

Japan’s Tokugawa Era was created by the first shogun, Tokugawa Ieyasu, in 1603. Ieyasu withdrew Japan from international trade and relations and created a closed, feudal society.  For 250 years, the Japanese conducted international trade only with the Dutch and Chinese, and even then only in specially designated trading ports such as the manmade island of Dejima in Nagasaki harbor. Ieyasu also brutally suppressed Christianity and expelled European missionaries. 

Silence tells the story of a Portuguese Jesuit priest, Sebastiao Rodrigues, who is sent by the Catholic Church to Japan in 1639 to investigate reports that his mentor, a Jesuit priest in Japan named Ferreira, has committed apostasy and renounced the Christian faith. About half of the book is Rodriguez's written journal. Rodrigues and his companion Garrpe arrive in Japan to find the local Christian population has been driven underground. To ferret out these hidden Christians, government officials force suspected Christians…

Silence

By Shusaku Endo, William Johnston (translator),

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Silence as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Now a major motion picture directed by Martin Scorsese, starring Liam Neeson, Adam Driver and Andrew Garfield.

With an introduction by Martin Scorsese

'One of the finest historical novels written by anyone, anywhere . . . Flawless' - David Mitchell

Father Rodrigues is an idealistic Portuguese Jesuit priest who, in the 1640s, sets sail for Japan on a determined mission to help the brutally oppressed Japanese Christians and to discover the truth behind unthinkable rumours that his famous teacher Ferreira has renounced his faith. Once faced with the realities of religious persecution Rodrigues himself is forced to make an impossible…


Successful Women Think Differently

By Valorie Burton,

Book cover of Successful Women Think Differently: 9 Habits to Make You Happier, Healthier, & More Resilient

Valerie Burtons gives great guidance enabling and encouraging change through the simplest form of your thoughts. Understanding how you think can lead to your success, she outlines the discovery that encourages and enable empowerment within ourselves. Her holistic approach through positive thinking and transparent coaching enable the cultivation of positive perspectives for all of life’s lessons. 

Successful Women Think Differently

By Valorie Burton,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Successful Women Think Differently as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Popular author and professional certified coach Valorie Burton knows that successful women think differently. They make decisions differently. They set goals differently and bounce back from failure differently. Valorie is dedicated to help women create new thought processes that empower them to succeed in their relationships, finances, work, health, and spiritual life. With new, godly habits, women will discover how to:

focus on solutions, not problems choose courage over fear nurture intentional relationships take consistent action in the direction of their dreams build the muscle of self-control

In this powerful and practical guide, Valorie provides a woman with insight into…


Woman Evolve

By Sarah Jakes Roberts,

Book cover of Woman Evolve: Break Up with Your Fears and Revolutionize Your Life

This book is all about relationships. It is about a relationship with God and his people and that we are certainly more alike than different. Woman Evolve takes the reader through the story of Eve and shows the reader just how she is relatable to each and every one of us. Eve was human and we are human. She had flaws and we have flaws. Her vulnerabilities are also ours and before we point the blame at her, or anyone else for that matter we can look right back at ourselves and understand how each and every one of us doesn’t necessarily deserve redemption, but God gave it anyway. Want a good read, this book will keep you turning page after page as the reader and author explores just how fallible, alike, and loved we all are.

Woman Evolve

By Sarah Jakes Roberts,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Woman Evolve as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

A New York Times bestseller! With life lessons she's learned and new insights from the story of Eve, Sarah Jakes Roberts shows you how past disappointments, struggles, and even mistakes can be used today to help you become the woman God intended.

Who would imagine being friends with Eve-the woman who's been held responsible for the fall of humanity (and cramps) for thousands of years? Certainly not Sarah Jakes Roberts. That is, not until Sarah discovered she is more like Eve than she cares to admit.

Everyone faces trials, and everyone will mess up. But failure should not be the…


Boxers & Saints

By Gene Luen Yang,

Book cover of Boxers & Saints

I’ve always loved Hong Kong New Wave movies, but they often emphasize action and flashy melodrama over historical context. For someone wanting to dig a little deeper, the graphic novel Boxers & Saints is a look into the parallel lives of two Chinese teenagers during the Boxer Rebellion—One is a red-blooded patriot eager to fight Western invaders. The other is a troubled girl who finds liberation in Christianity. Both characters are carried along, motivated, and then betrayed by fanaticism. When their paths cross, they are forced to learn the difference between religious faith and religious mania. The simple artwork isn’t meant to be lingered over…I read all 512 pages at breakneck speed.

Boxers & Saints

By Gene Luen Yang,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Boxers & Saints as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The Boxers & Saints Boxed Set from Gene Luen Yang, one of the greatest comics storytellers alive, brings all his formidable talents to bear in this astonishing work.

In two volumes, Boxers & Saints tells two parallel stories. The first is of Little Bao, a Chinese peasant boy whose village is abused and plundered by Westerners claiming the role of missionaries. Little Bao, inspired by visions of the Chinese gods, joins a violent uprising against the Western interlopers. Against all odds, their grass-roots rebellion is successful.

But in the second volume, Yang lays out the opposite side of the conflict.…


5 book lists we think you will like!

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