Cover Image: Stray Dogs

Stray Dogs

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Member Reviews

I am an avid reader of Rawi Hage; Cockroach is a book that I read and reread and come up with different interpretations every time, and De Niro's Game I find to be breathtaking in its use of rhythm and repetition. I think, perhaps, that I just prefer Hage as a novelist; whatever the reason may be, I found Stray Dogs to be his usual excellent writing, but not as engaging in terms of the storylines. For that reason I'm giving this 4/5 stars, and I want to stress that it's 4/5 in comparison to Hage's past writing, not in comparison to the average writer. He is still resolutely in a league of his own and every single one of his books deserves to be read again and again.
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A stunning collection of short stories that examines complicated and rich themes, such as transnational family structure, diasporic communities, globalization, racism, and identity. Found each story unique and engrossing to read.
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Was happy to include this wonderful book of thematic short stories March’s edition of Novel Encounters, my regular column highlighting the month’s most anticipated fiction for Zoomer magazine. (at link)
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Peopled with countless expats (mostly from the Middle East; mostly working as photographers or academics; mostly living in Montreal), Stray Dogs is a collection of eleven short stories that I would categorise as slices of life. I’ve read, and for the most part loved, each of Rawi Hage’s novels, and while his writing at the sentence level in the short form is still of the highest quality, these stories (with the exception of maybe one or two) are missing that frisson of urgency or swerve that I so love in the work of my favourite short story writers (like Alice Munro or George Saunders). Interesting as slices of life, not quite to my personal taste for the format.
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