Month: September 2006

Desai Review

Those of you who subscribe to TLS, check out Hirsh Sawhney’s review of Kiran Desai’s The Inheritance of Loss. I read the novel earlier this summer and it really stayed with me–a very fine work. It was recently shortlisted for this year’s Booker Prize, and is now out in paperback. I’d love to give away a copy, but I have finally, finally finished packing my books.

Rendition to Morocco

The Moroccan Human Rights Association is asking the government to come clean about rendition in the kingdom. The BBC reports:

Abdelhamid Amine, who is their chairman, said both the Moroccan government and Washington had to come clean.

“The United States, which declares itself a democratic country, must recognise that these so-called black sites exist and that torture goes on there,” he said.

“The United States justifies all this in the name of its war against terrorism. But we, as the defenders of human rights in Morocco, cannot accept that in the name of the war on terror you can also violate human rights or practice the terrorism of torture.”

Predictably, the Minister of Justice denies the existence of any CIA prisons, etc.

Desktop Clean-Up

I still have not finished packing my office. Today, though, I tried to go through all the clutter on my desk. Here’s what I found so far:

1 half-used box of small index cards.
1 set of large index cards with old notes and ideas for short stories.
2 jumbo-size paper clips.
2 staplers.
2 tape dispensers.
1 iKlear laptop cleaner.
3 bobby pins.
2 sets of Chinese hairpins.
2 hair bands.
1 butterfly pin.
2 half-used books of stamps.
My log book.
My note book.
1 pair of earplugs.
1 pair of reading glasses prescribed to me by a zealous optometrist back in 1998, and which I have never used nor needed.
1 nail file.
1 Wite Out.
1 map of Rabat, 1 of Casablanca, 1 of Morocco.
1 file folder labeled ‘Events’, 1 labeled ‘Fulbright.’
1 Authors’ Guild Bulletin.
1 greeting card that says, “You’re the best auntie in the world.” Aww.
4 pens, 2 highlighters.
A photo of my beloved grandmother, my mother, my younger brother, and me.
1 voucher for a yoga class.
Eye drops.
My cell phone.
The Anchor Book of Arabic Fiction.
Season of Migration to the North by Tayib Salih.
The Fall 2006 issue of Virginia Quarterly Review.
1 yellow notepad, half-used. The last item says, “Call Keiko.”
A bibliography of works on Morocco.
My laptop.
A publicity postcard for my book.
A United Airlines frequent-flyer card.
A reminder to make a dentist appointment. The reminder dates from January 17, 2006.
The July-August issue of World Literature Today.
The latest issue of the New Yorker, with 4 phone numbers scribbled on the cover.
1 chapstick.
The neighbor’s house keys.
My overflowing box of rejection letters.
Fan letters: A two-page one from a seventeen-year-old; a ten-page one from an inmate on death row.
1 phone recharger.
4 old back-ups for my laptop.
1 Dust Blaster Pro.
1 file labeled ‘Interesting Articles/Stuff To read.’
A collection of misspellings of my name, which I cut out of envelopes and other correspondence.
Various drafts of various parts of my novel.
My laptop.

And I need to trim this list to:

My laptop.


The new issue of the London Review of Books is up online. It includes Frank Kermode’s review of Edward Said’s book on late style, though that piece is available to subscribers only.


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