Our top book picks this week: sacred architecture and power struggles in Beirut

newslide Non-fiction Architecture, Power and Religion in Lebanon by Ward Vloeberghs Engaging look at how religious architecture has become a site of power struggles in contemporary Beirut. Also examines the legacy of Rafiq Hariri and the history of the 150-year-old Mohammad Al Amin Mosque. (Brill, December, 2015) newslide The Idealist: Aaron Swartz and the Rise […]

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Non-fiction

Architecture, Power and Religion in Lebanon by Ward Vloeberghs

Engaging look at how religious architecture has become a site of power struggles in contemporary Beirut. Also examines the legacy of Rafiq Hariri and the history of the 150-year-old Mohammad Al Amin Mosque. (Brill, December, 2015)

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The Idealist: Aaron Swartz and the Rise of Free Culture on the Internet by Justin Peters

Aaron Swartz was a tech genius who killed himself in 2013. He was arrested after downloading millions of academic articles. This looks at his life and the growth of the free culture movement. (Scribner, January 28)

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City of Thorns: Nine Lives in the World’s Largest Refugee Camp by Ben Rawlence

Is a refugee camp a humanitarian disaster or hideout for terrorists? It depends on who you talk to. Searing account of life in Kenya’s Dadaab camp through the perspective of nine refugees. (Portobello Books, January 21)

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Fiction

The Maker of Swans by Paraic O’Donnell

Mr Crowe, an eccentric owner of a rundown mansion, commits a crime of passion. This draws the attention of the head of a secret society that Crowe had once joined. Thriller that weaves between fantasy and reality. (Weidenfeld and Nicolson, February 14)

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My Own Dear Brother by Holly Müller

Rural Austria, 1944. Europe is in flames but the war has yet to reach the village of Felddorf and life for Ursula remains one of innocence. However, when Russian prisoners escape from a local concentration camp and her brother’s loyalty to the Hitler Youth emerges, life will never be the same again. (Bloomsbury Circus, February 11)

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Yevgeny Onegin by Alexander Pushkin

The hapless aristocrat Yevgeny Onegin has come into his inheritance and left the glamour of St Petersburg for his uncle’s country estate. But his personal life is about to get very messy. New translation from Anthony Briggs – one of the world’s leading experts on Pushkin’s work. (Pushkin Press, February 4)


Source: art & life

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