Snippets: the myth of Al-Andalus // “Hot Milk”

Your blogger stumbled on these while scanning through a list of Financial Times summer reading recommendations:

The Myth of the Andalusian Paradise: Muslims, Christians and Jews under Islamic Rule in Medieval Spain, by Darío Fernández-Morera, EDS Publications, RRP£25/ISI Books, RRP$29.95

Medieval Islamic Spain basks in a reputation for being well ahead of its time as an enlightened polity that promoted harmony among its three religious faiths. In what Hispanist scholars are hailing as the most important book on the subject in many years, Fernández-Morera, a Northwestern University historian, concludes that this reputation is much exaggerated.

A google search results in quite a few reviews of this book, e.g. the one by the New English Review and another by the Center for Islamic Pluralism.

 

Not by a Spanish author but set in Spain – and on the Man Booker Prize longlist:

Hot Milk, by Deborah Levy, Hamish Hamilton, RRP£12.99

In a hot, dry, underemployed Spain, 25-year-old Sofia arrives with her mother Rose to find a cure for the latter’s obscure and obsessive ailments. Sofia becomes unhealthily caught up in her mother’s suffering, until she discovers various unexpected forms of release.

Reviews abound, e.g. from The Telegraph, The Guardian (1, 2), and The New York Times.

 

SOURCE: FT, July 1, 2016

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