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Finding Nouf | [Zoe Ferraris]

Finding Nouf

Nayir al-Sharqi, known by his friends for religious piety and his Bedouin-like knowledge of the desert, lends his assistance to a wealthy family when their soon to-be-married daughter Nouf goes missing. After a short search, the girl is found dead, apparently drowned in the desert during a freak deluge. Something about her death doesn't sit well with Nayir, however, and he makes an uncomfortable alliance with a female coroner's technician to determine what really happened.
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Publisher's Summary

Zoe Ferraris' debut novel is hailed as a startling, richly textured work. With Finding Nouf, Ferraris delivers an electrifying page-turner that is at once a murder mystery and an intriguing glimpse into the culture of Saudi Arabia.

Nayir al-Sharqi, known by his friends for religious piety and his Bedouin-like knowledge of the desert, lends his assistance to a wealthy family when their soon to-be-married daughter Nouf goes missing. After a short search, the girl is found dead, apparently drowned in the desert during a freak deluge. Something about her death doesn't sit well with Nayir, however, and he makes an uncomfortable alliance with a female coroner's technician to determine what really happened.

The riveting mystery in Finding Nouf is complemented by the novel's engaging protagonist, whose romantic awakening will linger long in readers' thoughts.

©2008 Zoe Ferraris; (P)2008 Recorded Books, LLC

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.0 (118 )
5 star
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3.9 (67 )
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4.2 (69 )
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Performance
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  •  
    12-30-08
    12-30-08
    HELPFUL VOTES
    59
    ratings
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    564
    8
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    "transported"

    I thoroughly enjoyed this mystery. While there is a whodunit at the center of the storyline, I was captivated by the many details of daily life in Saudi Arabia. Inside the head of a righteous Muslim, the retrictions on women from clothing to needing a driver or male escort to the difficult, if not impossible, effort to get to know a member of the opposite sex. Give it a listen!

    10 of 10 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Norm Florissant, CO, United States 02-08-11
    Norm Florissant, CO, United States 02-08-11 Member Since 2010
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Good mystery with Saudi accuracy"

    The butler didn't do it, and I had a hard time figuring it out until near the end. I lived in Saudi Arabia for a year, and the culteral backdrop is accurate in my opinion.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Holly san diego, CA, United States 05-26-09
    Holly san diego, CA, United States 05-26-09 Member Since 2007
    HELPFUL VOTES
    3
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    "stunning"

    A stunning view of a world to which few of us are privy. Excellent narration and a fascinating story. Loved it.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Nan Ayers San Mateo, CA 10-08-12
    Nan Ayers San Mateo, CA 10-08-12 Member Since 2004
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Should be read by everyone"
    What did you love best about Finding Nouf?

    The perspective of life in Saudi Arabia - the role of women.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Nayir - his knowledge of the desert and the fact that, while being very traditional, he is able to be open to the changes around him - particularly those of the roles of women.


    Which character – as performed by Pete Bradbury – was your favorite?

    Nouf's sister.


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    Only that I have been telling everyone I know to read it.


    Any additional comments?

    Unique approach by a detective, dealing with the death of a young woman, in a totally "veiled" society. I feel that everyone should read this for a better understanding of this part of the world.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Ellen Chesterton, IN, United States 05-15-12
    Ellen Chesterton, IN, United States 05-15-12 Member Since 2008

    I'm a bibliophile since early childhood. Love speculative fiction, odd premises, mystery novels that teach about different places and times.

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "An Interesting View into Another Culture"

    I find the best detective stories are often not about the crime. Instead they're about the world in which the crime happens.
    This is a view into the world of Muslim women that I suspect is neither romaticised or vilified. The whole premise turns on the men in this woman's life who have no idea who she is. It's not a quiveringly good book but it's a good read and a fascinating glimpse into another world.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Judith A. Weller LaVale, MD United States 01-23-12
    Judith A. Weller LaVale, MD United States 01-23-12 Member Since 2008

    jw1917

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Not as Good as City of Veils"
    If you could sum up Finding Nouf in three words, what would they be?

    Interesting story but it drags in spot. At times character introspection makes the story lag way too much.


    Did the plot keep you on the edge of your seat? How?

    This is not a story to keep you hanging on the edge of your seat. The solution is pretty obvious early on. Consequently it has moments where the story really drags. It is less of a mystery than an exploration of chraacters. I got really fed up with Nair and his thoughts. I am not a reader who like to spend too much time with characters whose thoughts fill too many pages.


    Did the narration match the pace of the story?

    At first I didn't like the narration but I guess it suited the story which was very male oriented. However, the narrator is not good with female voices. Simon Prebble he is not. The narrator was OK but not great.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    It took me several days to listen to this book as I would get bored with it frequently.


    Any additional comments?

    A better book by this author is City of Veils which is a very gripping mystery story and moves along well. This book has too many spots where it drags.

    3 of 4 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Juanita Hillsville, VA, United States 10-18-11
    Juanita Hillsville, VA, United States 10-18-11 Member Since 2011
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    "DO "Find Nouf""

    This is a fascinating glimpse into a world we westerners know so little about. The author does a great job pulling us into the realities of modern day Islamic culture through her characters and she creates a commonality that leaves one caring about people we probably never would give a second thought to. An enjoyable and thoroughly interesting story!

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Toni Mississauga, Ontario, Canada 02-03-11
    Toni Mississauga, Ontario, Canada 02-03-11 Member Since 2006
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Loved It"

    Enjoyed this book. Great combination of mystery, character development. Loved the author's explaination and description of a muslim world where you finish the book with a better understanding of the role of women, the strength of women without judgement. Can't wait for more books from this author.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Tom Overland Park, KS, United States 08-14-14
    Tom Overland Park, KS, United States 08-14-14 Member Since 2011
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    10
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    "Fascinating Culture, So-So Murder Mystery"
    Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

    I enjoyed learning about the country more than who done it, honestly.


    What was the most interesting aspect of this story? The least interesting?

    It was interesting to see how law enforcement worked over in the middle east and how the culture differed from my own.


    What aspect of Pete Bradbury’s performance would you have changed?

    Nothing, really.


    Was Finding Nouf worth the listening time?

    I'm normally not much of a murder mystery guy, but yes, I'd say this was worth the read. More so because the middle east fascinates me then for the actual mystery, but still...


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    gkbowood 05-25-14
    gkbowood 05-25-14

    gkbowood

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Keeps you guessing!"
    What did you love best about Finding Nouf?

    Learning about the culture and how the characters interacted within the confines of that culture.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Finding Nouf?

    Spoiler: The difference between how "Desert Detective" behaved at the beginning and how he behaved at the end with regards to the female Lab Technician,especially at the Ferris wheel.


    Which scene was your favorite?

    When he was taken into the aquarium room: it made me want to see that room and if it existed in reality.


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    No, just wanted to read the next book about these two people!


    Any additional comments?

    I saw a review that said the second book was not as compelling as the first, but that won't stop me from reading it! I hope the author continues the series, as it is very interesting and I like the detecting duo.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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