Review by Rosemary Okoko -- The Expelled by Mois Benarroch

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Rosemary Okoko
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Review by Rosemary Okoko -- The Expelled by Mois Benarroch

Post by Rosemary Okoko » 22 Jun 2017, 00:53

[Following is a volunteer review of "The Expelled" by Mois Benarroch.]
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4 out of 4 stars
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The Expelled
By Mois Benarroch

Writers’ lives are so boring that the only thing that saves them from boredom is making up stories like young children who create imaginary friends and give them names to fill their world. These are the words of Mois Benarroch, the author of The Expelled. This book is a non-fiction narrative that has some touch of romance. The author uses ‘he’ and ‘she’ interchangeably as his characters change from ‘he’ to ‘she’. The author gives a narration of a bus ride he took. The people seated at the back were referred to as ‘back people’ and those in front as ‘front people’. Front people hated back people so much that they could not allow them to use the ‘can’ which was another name for the washroom. A boundary line had to be drawn in the middle to separate them. Back people were regarded as dirty, smelly and violent, by the front people. As using the ‘can’ was a necessity, back people complained and front people decided that they could only use it at specific hours. The author was sitting at the back. When sleeping, there was a gunshot and he woke up to find that Cash, the fifteen year old boy who had been sitting next to him, had been shot dead. Nobody owned up to killing him even though one passenger had a gun in his hands. This passenger with a gun was one of the front people. The front people made the decision on how to get rid of Cash’s body and proceed with the journey. They gave him the name Saint Cash, prayed for him and later offered prayers to him. They also blamed him for any shortcomings, attributing this to the fact that he was murdered.

The author, having moved with his family from Morocco, was living in Israel. Here, anyone from Morocco was regarded uneducated and violent. They were looked down upon and whenever the author tried to prove that he was from Morocco even by showing his identity card, people would not believe it and wondered why he was different and nice. The author says that in order to stop being different, he had to stop being born in Morocco, something that no one knows how to do yet, and if anyone knows, they have not shared it. At one time he decided that he was from France and even hated a Moroccan poet who declared openly that he was from Morocco. After a while, the author changed his perception and decided to like this author and even make it known that he himself was from Morocco. He lived as a recluse, a leper and an expelled.

The author’s story of the bus is reflective of the oppression his people faced in Israel. The expelled were not allowed to make decisions. ‘The front people throw stones. When the back people throw them back they call us terrorists though back people were opposed to stone throwing because it didn’t seem humane to them’. This summarizes the feelings of the author as one of the expelled. I liked this book because you have to jog your mind and put two and two together to understand the story.

I enjoyed reading this book which has undergone professional editing. A few errors on spacing could be blamed on the format. Having read other books by this author, I find this book the easiest to understand and will rate this book 4 out of 4 stars. I have no reason to rate it lower.

I recommend this book to anyone who would like to read on oppression and identity crisis. When looked down upon, you might get tempted to change your identity so as to be accepted by those who hate you. This book contains some explicit content.

******
The Expelled
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Post by Snowflake » 11 Jul 2017, 19:33

Thanks for the review. It sounds like a thought provoking book and perhaps a difficult and challenging read.
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Rosemary Okoko
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Post by Rosemary Okoko » 12 Jul 2017, 03:48

Thank you Snowflake for reading and commenting. It sure is a challenging read.

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Post by Miriam Molina » 26 Jul 2017, 09:31

Hi, Rosemary Okoko! Thanks for your thoughts about this book which was my first review. I enjoy reading other people's opinions about it. Though we have varying interpretations of the story, we are all one in saying that the book is a challenge to read. Mois Benarroch's style is unusual and unforgettable.

Rosemary Okoko
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Post by Rosemary Okoko » 26 Jul 2017, 10:06

I agree with you Miriam Molina. His writing style is unique. Thanks for reading and commenting.

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Post by ruthkirira » 28 Jul 2017, 12:44

Even with my love for non-fiction books. This sounds like a difficult read. I am not sure I would be interested in reading it. Thanks for your enlightenment on the book.

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Post by Brandon101 » 28 Jul 2017, 13:55

Thank you, the review is well written. I'd love to read this book!

Rosemary Okoko
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Post by Rosemary Okoko » 28 Jul 2017, 14:29

Thank you ruthkirira and Brandon101 for reading and commenting.

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Post by Darakhshan Nazir » 28 Jul 2017, 15:42

Admirable review . I will give this novel a try soon
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Post by Rosemary Okoko » 29 Jul 2017, 00:30

Thank you Darakhshan Nazir. Hope you will enjoy it.

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Post by testing123456 » 29 Jul 2017, 00:58

Good review!

Rosemary Okoko
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Post by Rosemary Okoko » 29 Jul 2017, 01:12

Thank you testing123456. Nice of you to stop by!

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Post by Harmony Hills » 29 Jul 2017, 04:33

I've read this and it's hard to read due to editorial aspects that have affected the quality of the book. But this book is an eye opener. Nice review. :)
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Rosemary Okoko
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Post by Rosemary Okoko » 29 Jul 2017, 04:47

Thank you Harmony Hills for reading and leaving a comment. For sure this book doesn't make an easy read.

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Post by juliusotinyo » 21 Aug 2017, 09:54

I guess this is about the Sephardi-Ashkenazi rift common in Benarroch's books. I can't read his books though, only "Gates to Tangier," was easy.

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