Title: The Storyteller
Author: Pierre Jarawan
Publisher: World Editions
Publish Date: April 2, 2019
What's the Story?:
From Goodreads.com: "Samir leaves the safety and comfort of his family’s adopted home in Germany for volatile Beirut in an attempt to find his missing father. His only clues are an old photo and the bedtime stories his father used to tell him. The Storyteller follows Samir’s search for Brahim, the father whose heart was always yearning for his homeland, Lebanon."
My Two Cents:
"The Storyteller" is the story of Samir, who mostly grew up in Germany after his family leaves war-torn Lebanon. He grows up hearing stories of the family's homeland. His father is especially good at telling these stories. When a mysterious photograph seemingly causes the disappearance of his father, it will eventually send Samir on a journey back to Lebanon, a place where he now feels totally out of place, to search for his father.
Oh man, you all know that I love a good family secret and this book definitely has a huge one. I don't want to give anything away but the mystery of what happened to Samir's father is oh so good and definitely kept me reading to try to figure out what happened. The author does a great job of giving out small hints to keep you wanting to read.
This book also has a really good sense of setting. I loved reading about Germany and Lebanon through the eyes of these characters. We get to see how the family adapts to their new home in Germany and how Samir's father goes out of his way to make conversation with everyone he meets, always making people feel welcome even when their new home is not so welcoming always to his family. I loved reading about Lebanon, both the myth in Samir's father's mind and the reality that Samir experiences when he sees the country for himself.
The writing of this book was so good! The descriptions are almost lyrical and really lovely to read. I especially appreciated the descriptions when reading Samir's father's stories. The descriptions really made the story pop. Overall, this was a great story that will stick with me for a long time!