Reviews of The Arrogant Years
Interview in Egypt's Seven Days Magazine
Paper written by Leo-Paul Dana based on The Arrogant Years and The Man in the White Sharkskin Suit.
Paper written by Léo-Paul Dana based on The Arrogant Years and The Man in the White Sharkskin Suit.
The Arrogant Years is brilliantly conceived and excecuted. Its 400 pages chronicling Lagnado's Jewish heritage and personal and familial history make for a spellbinding read. She has depicted an era in Cairo that the world shouldn't forget.
It is a fascinating and masterfully-told story filled with amazing details of life in Cairo and as a young Jewish girl coming-of-age in Brooklyn.
Each of Lagnado’s twin memoirs can be approached as a tribute, one to her father and one to her mother. Yet neither one of these books is merely a eulogy to a beloved parent. Precisely because Lagnado is a truth-teller as well as a story-teller, both Edith and Leon — and the author herself — loom up as fully human and utterly unforgettable.
In this sequel, continuing the family saga in America, Lagnado focuses on her mother Edith, whom she adored and whose story is deeply intertwined with her own. Throughout their lives, mother and daughter shared high hopes and expectations, as well as disillusionment and irretrievable losses.
In her sharply etched coming-of-age memoir, Lucette trades “arrogance” for understanding and romantic impatience for the larger rhythms of Jewish wisdom. She may have begun her long journey as a stranger in a strange land, but what she comes to realize is the odd in the familiar and the familiar in the odd. Only writers of the first order—like Lagnado—can make this insight work in the shape and ring of their sentences.
"The author vividly describes the clash of values and recaptures the intimate bonds forged between mothers and daughters as they struggle to find their place in the world. "