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  • Akhenaten
  • Written by Naguib Mahfouz
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  • Akhenaten
  • Written by Naguib Mahfouz
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Dweller in Truth A Novel

Written by Naguib MahfouzAuthor Alerts:  Random House will alert you to new works by Naguib Mahfouz


List Price: $11.99


On Sale: November 26, 2008
Pages: 176 | ISBN: 978-0-307-48126-9
Published by : Anchor Knopf
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From the winner of the Nobel Prize for Literature and author of the Cairo trilogy, comes Akhenaten, a fascinating work of fiction about the most infamous pharaoh of ancient Egypt.

In this beguiling new novel, originally published in 1985 and now appearing for the first time in the United States, Mahfouz tells with extraordinary insight the story of the "heretic pharaoh," or "sun king,"--and the first known monotheistic ruler--whose iconoclastic and controversial reign during the 18th Dynasty (1540-1307 B.C.) has uncanny resonance with modern sensibilities.   Narrating the novel is a young man with a passion for the truth, who questions the pharaoh's contemporaries after his horrible death--including Akhenaten's closest friends, his most bitter enemies, and finally his enigmatic wife, Nefertiti--in an effort to discover what really happened in those strange, dark days at Akhenaten's court.  As our narrator and each of the subjects he interviews contribute their version of Akhenaten, "the truth" becomes increasingly evanescent.  Akhenaten encompasses all of the contradictions his subjects see in him: at once cruel and empathic, feminine and barbaric, mad and divinely inspired, his character, as Mahfouz imagines him, is eerily modern, and fascinatingly ethereal.  An ambitious and exceptionally lucid and accessible book, Akhenaten is a work only Mahfouz could render so elegantly, so irresistibly.
Naguib Mahfouz

About Naguib Mahfouz

Naguib Mahfouz - Akhenaten

Photo © Barry Iverson

Naguib Mahfouz was born in Cairo in 1911 and began writing when he was seventeen. A student of philosophy and an avid reader, his works range from reimaginings of ancient myths to subtle commentaries on contemporary Egyptian politics and culture. Over a career that lasted more than five decades, he wrote 33 novels, 13 short story anthologies, numerous plays, and 30 screenplays. Of his many works, most famous is The Cairo Trilogy, consisting of Palace Walk (1956), Palace of Desire (1957), and Sugar Street (1957), which focuses on a Cairo family through three generations, from 1917 until 1952. In 1988, he became the first writer in Arabic to be awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature. He died in August 2006.

Praise | Awards


Praise for Naguib Mahfouz:

"The greatest writer in one of the most widely understood languages in the world, a storyteller of the first order in any idiom."--Vanity Fair

"A Dickens of the Cairo caf&#233s." --Newsweek

"The incredible variety of Naguib Mahfouz's writings continue to dazzle our eyes."--The Washington Post

"Naguib Mahfouz virtually invented the novel as an Arab form.   He excels at fusing deep emotion and soap opera."--The New York Times Book Review

"Mahfouz's work is freshly nuanced and hauntingly lyrical.   The Nobel Prize acknowledges the universal significance of his fiction."--Los Angeles Times Book Review


WINNER New York Public Library Books for the Teen Age
WINNER Nobel Prize

  • Akhenaten by Naguib Mahfouz
  • April 04, 2000
  • Fiction - Literary
  • Anchor
  • $14.95
  • 9780385499095

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