I read this in French for my French class. My exam was on this book and let me tell you, it took everything in me to finish this. Nothing happens untilMaha gets raped and dies. So, for the first 200 pages it's just Karim in Montreal hating everything then back in Beyrouth where the civil war is still going on. And in Beyrouth all the way to Chlifa it's just them walking...and walking...and walking. They run into close to no danger, there is no action, and most of all there is close to no emotion. I wouldn't have read this if I had the choice because it's so boring.