Today my review is about L… For Life; Love & Lots In Between by Loaiy A. Tageldin. More about the author first:
Loaiy A. Tageldin was born in Cairo, Egypt on the 1st of January 1979. Though his native tongue is Arabic, he started writing poetry in English when he was 17 and then short stories when he was 21. Having graduated as a botanist from the faculty of science, Ain Shams University, Cairo; he has always had a passion for creative writing.
He moved to Dubai at the age of 25, a professional biology teacher and got married at the age of 26 with 2 sons; Hamza and Ahmed. Loaiy always believed in keeping his writings to his closer circle of friends and relatives with no intention whatsoever in conquering the world of the print…However in 2009, after a real life tragedy, he decided to transform all the pain and grief to a world of sharing and hope…
Loaiy is also an amateur photographer.
“L for life, love, and lots in between”, his debut compilation of short stories came out to life through the healing process between 2009-2010 and was published on December 2010, and currently in print for its 2nd edition, and will be released in Egypt and UAE by the end of 2014.
Then Love spoke to me. “You know I didn’t want this to happen. The problem is that you never trusted me…it was not meant to end up this way. Take a look at your baking, reach behind you. Do you see what you have?.
And I did. There, stuck to my back, was a parachute.
Love smiled at me and, like a tender loving mother nursing her son, wiped the blood and sweat from my brow.
“You had a parachute right from the start, but you were too afraid to pull the cord. You were the one who decided to carry on falling; you cannot blame me for your pain…for your hurt. Not in my name.”
“L…for Life; Love, & Lots in between” is exploring these keystone moments that we pass along our lives; these snapshots that change the course of our lives forever; in other words, there is a story for each one of us… “L… for Life; Love & Lots in between” is the debut book of Loaiy A. Tageldin; a contemporary Egyptian writer.
L… for Life; Love & Lots in between is such an apt title for the stories that this book contains. The book cover is beautiful and serene. The positioning of the setting sun, its reflection and the title, is nice. This book consists of 12 short stories.
All the stories have a philosophical touch, analyzing life from all angles. My favorite story has got to be the one titled Ginger. It is about a lady who distances herself from her friend and after many years realizes that she could have handled the situation better and yet again finds her ego getting in the way with thoughts as to why her friend couldn’t be the one resolving this situation and not her. At the beginning of this story, it also shows how she, on her usual commute to work, sees the same set of people day after day and seeing them becomes part of her routine. Then when someone is not seen there for a week, she worries for them. These are little things that go unnoticed in our daily lives. These stories make us think and touches us.
The author succeeds in capturing these fleeting moments in life very nicely throughout all the stories. I had assumed that all of these stories are fictional. However, the last two stories are based on the author’s own life. It’s about a tragic event in his life and I found the raw emotions portrayed beautifully on those pages. My heart went out to him and I was grieving his loss. I found myself moved to tears. I don’t want to include a spoiler in this review and as such you will have to read the book to know more. L… for Life; Love & Lots in between is the first work of the author. Even though it’s his debut, he has done a good job.
I give this book a rating of 4 out of 5, which by Goodreads standards mean that I ‘really liked it’.
Links to this book
Source: I won a signed physical copy of this book from Sally of Canadian Sassy Sally. Thanks Sally for hosting that giveaway and for giving the opportunity to win this lovely book!. I absolutely love and treasure signed books. The author wrote the words “To Naznin, May falling stars always guide your path…” in addition to signing it :).