Since the invention of the written word, some 6,000 years ago, countless quotes have been produced, elaborating and focusing on its importance. Examples of some of the immortal quotes that have been said by prominent figures over the years include, “Literacy is a bridge from misery to hope”, “Once you learn to read, you will be forever free”, and “Reading should not be presented to children as a chore or duty. It should be offered to them as a precious gift”. With the increase of distractive technology, we must never forget and always preserve the long-lasting value of reading.
To motivate and ignite the passion of our cherished readers, we’ve combined a summary of some of the most read books in Egypt this year, after skimming through the 50 books listed on Goodreads website. For those who are not familiar with the site, Goodreads, owned by the online retailer Amazon, is a social cataloguing website that allows individuals to search its database of books, annotations, and reviews. Now, let’s take a look at a few of this year’s incredible English and Arabic literary works.
Moosim Seid Alghizlan (Average Rating: 2.71)
Based on a cursory glance, we noticed that all 50 books were rated above 3, except for this one. Roughly translated from the Arabic description provided on the website, Ahmed Murad brings us the story of a man, called Nadeem, who dreams of a redhead gipsy, standing at the bottom of the ocean. A few hours later, while giving a lecture on stage, he sees the same woman sitting amongst the attendees. And on that same day, he receives an unexpected invitation to an experience that many would enjoy, as long as the ending is unknown, because some truths are better left in the dark. To be honest, the last phrase was a bit vague in meaning, so that means you’ll just have to read the book to find out!
Utopia (Average Rating: 3.91)
Without checking the rating, we were positive that this book would score well after finding out that the author was the renowned late Egyptian author, Ahmed Khaled Tawfik. The setting takes place in the “Utopia”, where the wealthy members of society live in isolation, guarded by US marines. There, they live a life of sin that revolves around drugs and other immoralities. Simultaneously, the poor live in exile, suffering from dismal circumstances and tearing each other to shreds in order to live. The stability is suddenly at risk of crumbling when the narrator and his friend, Germinal, decide to sneak out of Utopia.
1984 (Average Rating: 4.17)
George Orwell was accredited as a visionary after publishing his literary masterpiece, 1984; it was truly ahead of its time. Whether you read it in the past or the present, you will be genuinely fascinated by how a man in the 1940s could have possibly predicted and documented so many events, that are still relevant today, in the form of a simple story. The Guardian stated in a review three years ago, “Orwell effectively explores the themes of mass media control, government surveillance, totalitarianism, and how a dictator can manipulate and control history, thoughts, and lives in such a way that no one can escape it.”
Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone (Average Rating: 4.47)
Do we really have to say anything? This is one of the few books in the world that probably doesn’t need an introduction, whether you’re a fan of the Harry Potter series or not. It’s been a household name, since its publication in the UK in 1997! We obviously can’t condense seven books into one paragraph, so we’ll give you the abridged version. Basically, the fantasy novel talks about Harry Potter, a young wizard who discovers his magical heritage on his eleventh birthday, when he receives a letter of acceptance to Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. And you know the rest!
Some other honourable mentions include Animal Farm, by George Orwell; the Alchemist, by Paul Coelho; Mithl Ikaros, also by Ahmed Khaled Tawfik; and Azrael, by Youssef Zidan.