Book - 2010 | 1st Vintage Books ed
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In the wake of Hurricane Katrina, longtime New Orleans residents Abdulrahman and Kathy Zeitoun are cast into an unthinkable struggle with forces beyond wind and water. In the days after the storm, Abdulrahman traveled the flooded streets in a secondhand canoe, passing on supplies and helping those he could. A week later, on September 6, 2005, Zeitoun abruptly disappeared--arrested and accused of being an agent of al Qaeda.
Publisher: New York : Vintage Books, 2010, c2009
Edition: 1st Vintage Books ed
Branch Call Number: 976.335064 E PBK
Characteristics: xv, 337 p. : ill. ; 21 cm
ISBN: 9780307387943


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Jul 27, 2019

I read Eggers' A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius several years ago. It was a ridiculous book, full of stunts and overwrought tragedy and look-at-the-literary-wunderkind antics, but I still enjoyed it. But not enough to try another of his books until this one, and it appears to be written by an entirely different person. Zeitoun is a Syrian-American who sees his family off to safety but then elects to stay behind in New Orleans to try to protect his property during Hurricane Katrina. This true story is very powerful and Eggers has the sense to simply relate the events as they unfold, with restraint and care. I think Zeitoun will stay with me for a long time.

Nov 20, 2015

After Hurricane Katrina, Abdulrahman Zeitoun, a Syrian-American contractor, stayed in New Orleans to protect his property. He used a canoe to rescue people, and he fed stranded dogs. But he was arrested and accused of being a member of Al Qaeda because of his appearance.
This is an important and very well-written story.

Dec 20, 2014

Brilliant! Eggers once again delivers a combination of memoir, journalistic expose, and novelistic saga to tell the story of a remarkable man who falls into a Kafka-like maze of malicious intent and bureaucratic fumbling.

SLS71 Jun 30, 2014

I liked the book until I looked up what is happening with the Zeitoun family today. I guess it goes to show you never really know what goes on behind closed doors. But reading about Zeitoun now has soured me on the book.

Jun 12, 2014

What happens when the country running Guantanamo Bay detention centre has to cope with the Hurricane Katrina crisis in multicultural New Orleans? I thought I'd heard most of the stories, but not this one. Eggers makes a good effort to get many sides of the story, and make one care about the central family. Perhaps less time could have been spent on the principal character's childhood, but that's a minor quibble.

Jul 07, 2013

Very worthwhile book to read

WVMLBookClubTitles Jun 22, 2013

In this compelling story of resilience and survival, Eggers chronicles the harrowing experiences of Syrian American Abdulrahman Zeitoun during Hurricane Katrina. In the aftermath of the storm, Zeitoun spends his days paddling through the streets providing whatever assistance he can to stranded residents. As the city falls into a state of chaos and disorder, the injustices that befall Zeitoun reveal the appalling failures of the American government. A sharply written, powerful and unforgettable story.

Apr 23, 2013

Just placed a hold on this book and would rather not have read things in the comments that give the story away. Please be careful what you post!

Jan 21, 2013

This is a wonderful book, possibly even a classic. It deserves to share a shelf with Huckleberry Finn and Catch-22.

Oct 14, 2012

Nail-biting bit of journalism, an account of the New Orleans flood. Great writing.

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Dec 18, 2010

MelissaBee thinks this title is suitable for 16 years and over


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Dec 18, 2010

An excellent account of the days leading up to and following the devastation of New Orleans by Hurricane Katrina as seen through the eyes of a hard working and caring citizen, Abdulrahman Zeitoun. The final third of the book also offers insight into the questionable priorities of FEMA under the direction of Homeland Security as Syrian-American Zeitoun falls into the hands of police and is under suspicion of terrorism. Haunting and unforgettable.


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