What We Are Reading Today: The Critical Case of K

Updated 09 August 2018

What We Are Reading Today: The Critical Case of K

This engaging novel in Arabic by Aziz Mohammed, a Saudi author and blogger from Alkhobar, tells the story of a lonely, melancholic person who defends his individuality against a social and economic system that threatens to overwhelm him.

The protagonist, who is frustrated by his limited abilities and is determined to protect his privacy, receives news that turns his life upside down.

He falls ill with leukemia and struggles with his family and work environment.

Although the author does not specify the society or country where the novel is set, the story could be based on the life of an ordinary young employee at an oil company in the eastern region of Saudi Arabia.

The novel is written in a diary format — after reading Kafka, "K" decides to write a diary, too — with the protagonist recording his daily battles with life in a  sarcastic voice.

The narrative flows smoothly, and the writing style follows a simple sentence structure and vocabulary choice.

Relationships have neither real value nor influence in the story. "K" is a lonely man who makes little effort to end his isolation — and that makes his story interesting and touching.

The novel, published by Lebanon's Dar Al-Tanweer, is 31-year-old Mohammed's first published novel. It was on the shortlist for the 2018 International Prize for Arabic Fiction (Booker).

Priyanka Chopra, Nick Jonas enjoy mini honeymoon in Oman

Updated 12 December 2018

Priyanka Chopra, Nick Jonas enjoy mini honeymoon in Oman

DUBAI: Actress Priyanka Chopra and her new husband Nick Jonas reportedly escaped to Oman for a quick break this week after their headline-making nuptials in India.
The Bollywood star and US singer tied the knot in an extravagant wedding ceremony in the Umaid Bhavan Palace in the Indian city of Jodhpur in early December — a multiple-day celebration that took the international media by storm, with newspapers around the world reporting on the happy occasion.
The newly-married couple then took a short secret trip to Oman, according to media reports.
The newlyweds seem to have enjoyed the short honeymoon before their Dec. 20 wedding reception for Bollywood guests in Mumbai.
They shared snaps from their Oman holiday on Instagram, including one photo the bride captioned, “Marital bliss they say.”

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Marital bliss they say..

A post shared by Priyanka Chopra Jonas (@priyankachopra) on

The photo featured a makeup-free Chopra cozied up to her new husband, with the open sea and a mountain range visible in the distance.
The couple married in both Christian and Hindu wedding ceremonies, with the bride, groom and other members of the wedding party wearing outfits designed by Ralph Lauren for the former.
The Christian ceremony was officiated by the groom’s father, Paul Kevin Jonas, People magazine reported.
The 36-year-old star and fashion icon chose a stunning red outfit by Indian designer to the stars Sabyasachi Mukherji for the Hindu ceremony.
In an interview published in People magazine, the couple expressed their happiness about tying the knot.
“It was all tears. All tears. I could not hold it in. I think I was nervous and scared … But as soon as the curtains opened and I saw his face it was just like everything settled and I knew I was making the best decision of my life,” Chopra said.
Chopra, who headlined three seasons of the ABC crime drama “Quantico,” is one of Bollywood’s biggest female leads with acting credits in several big-ticket films.
Jonas, 26, and his brothers Kevin and Joe formed a band, The Jonas Brothers, in 2005 and soared to fame as members of Disney’s stable of teenage stars. The band split up in 2013.