Monday, 8 November 2004

Book Review: Forbidden Love By Norma Khouri

The other day i went to virgin & took this book which when I started reading couldn't stop till I finished it. The book is based on a true story of a Jordanian woman who got killed to regain her families honor! (Which is an honor killing, a murder of women; that is supposed to cleanse the family name of any dishonor attached to it caused by a woman), deeply touching story about how women are taken to be less humans in Jordan. The story teller is Norma Khouri, who is the best friend of the diseased Dalia which got killed for loving a Christian man. 3/4 of the book is about how Jordanian people take women as less human being & how murder is the destiny of any woman that KNOWS a man (no adultery is necessary to kill her).

In Kuwait although we have a very conservative society & most of the people here don’t agree to relationships young people don’t give a damn most of Kuwaiti girls & boys had relationships directly or indirectly. We have a bit of small space to get both genders mixed with in limits for sure & what ever is off the limit is hidden well. Regardless if what went on the relationship people DON'T KILL their daughters for "JUST" knowing guys or falling in love, it goes as far as punishing them but murder! NO WAY, Just because she knew a guy!! Hell all of the girls out there did it & every one knows that.

I don’t deny the fact there are girls who didn’t have relationships & believe in the boundaries their families had drawn for them but a slip occurs. We are humans not machines & by the holy book of Qura'an we are supposed to make mistakes because we are humans, things happen!! . So I thought the punishment was over reacted & since I went to Jordan several times as a child I really didn’t hear of honor killings till Al-Jazera channel aired a program about that in Jordan where innocent women are killed & men don’t get punished since the crime is honor related & now this touching book.

Norma Khouri escaped with the help of the Christian guy (Michael) who fell in love with her life time friend, she went to Greece then as she says & the book's last pages state now living in Australia. The book when published made it to be called a best seller, so after I read it … at a moment this book made me cry it’s shameful to see women treated like that so I decided with the aid of the internet resources provided by the end of the book to do something YOU too can :} just log into this site & you will SEE


ABSOLUTELLY NOTHING, do you wonder why the site she posted on the end of the book is not WORKING because ARABS have a fetish for LYING & they are masters in it.

After all that! SHE IS FAKE, the book is NOT based on a true story. The writer Norma Khouri lived for 3 years ONLY in Jordan & paid a short visit to Jordan in the year 2000, she lived all her life in the USA married with 3 kids! Lives now in Australia where her publisher Random House sponsored her for a temporary residence visa. After her lies have been exposed her visa is in threat but she claimed she has evidence that the story was true, till the moment she didn’t prove that the story actually happened.

This is a Quote from The Sydney Morning Herald (Click for the full story)

"Khouri's real name is Norma Majid Khouri Michael Al-Bagain Toliopoulos, and she only lived in Jordan until she was three years old. She has a US passport and lived from 1973 until 2000 in Chicago. She is married with two children, 13 and 11. She has four American siblings and a mother who are desperate to hear news from her. But she has managed to conceal this double life from her publishers, her agent, lawyers in several continents, the Australian Department of Immigration and, until now, the public."

Not enough you say :} my finger knuckles agree with you I made a quick search last night & got this:

She ruined a great issue to blow out to the world, I know honor killings exist but NOW who would believe the society groups founded to raise their voices & stop killing innocent women in the name of honor!? It will be like the kid who yelled "wolf" too many times, people didn’t believe him when it really did happen. Lying got this book to be denied by all people & throwing a good cause down the drain, was it too difficult for the writer to say this is a fictitious story just to give people a glimpse of what is happening in Jordan? But I guess it’s a thing that runs in her blood. Unless she proves that the book was NOT a LIE the people who got compassionate with the honor killing issue will not believe that such things even exist. A writer's wealth is his/her integrity.

**I know someone will hate me for this LONG post :}**


Rampurple said...

I know what you mean!
I read this book during the summer and posted about it. I was amazed by the book. I finished at one go since I really got intrigued. I was disappointed to find out it was fake... even though I should be please...but still!!!

The following are links to what I had to say

It is a good book though.... worth the read.

Q80-Chill Girl said...

I know it is a good book & a nice story, but to know the writer lied about it! just made me feel so bad & angry!! why did she lie? this is what mostly made me upset because I did get affected by it & wanted so much to do something about honor killings & will do but to the right people NOT liars :}, the issue is important woman abuse EXISTS & making up stories is not needed & if so she should have said it from the beggining.

Purgatory said...

eee long post, wayed long!

Maryam said...

hmm I should read that book

Q80-Chill Girl said...


Ofcourse it is for you :D ,, any how ;p I thought you would say that :}

Q80-Chill Girl said...


You should it is an intresting story but fake :}.

Purgatory said...

Yeah I know, :)

Q80-Chill Girl said...

Soo @@ you don't hate me?

Drunk'n'Gorgeous said...

Boy who cried wolf :/

Regardless, since ALL of you are recommending it, then I'm sooo gonna go out and get it :)

They also said "Princess" was a true story. Was it?

Purgatory said...

Q8CG, me hate you ? now how can you think of such a thing ;) You are allowed to post 10 pages if you want to (as long as I get my BOTY award).


Q80-Chill Girl said...


HeLLo there :D madry leish a7b halbnaya kl ma achoof a comment by u I just SMILE :D. Any how the book is worth reading its nice you should try it & about "Princess" I really have no idea :D I didnt read it,, by who ?

Q80-Chill Girl said...


LOL well nothing is sure @@

Drunk'n'Gorgeous said...

Q80-Chill Girl - 7abeebty wallah that's really sweet of you :D

Click the link and trust me dear you WILL want to add this book to your collection. I swear I got this when I was a brat (and didn't like reading fat books) but I could not put this one down until I finished it. Sure it was made me feel indignant at times but it really is a must read.

W. said...

"Princess" is a stupid book..

Whoever associates with the Saudi Royal family, or even knows about "Saudi" will realise that this book is just to satisfy airheaded people who seek some cheap thrill out of spreading lies and rumors about the secrets of the "house of al-saud"

el7amdella wl shkr.. men meta banat als3ood yetgha6oon 3an elmalek fahad? well in case of "Princess Sultana" 3an el malek Faisal LOOOOL

and since when was el7aram assigned certain timings for men and women (each individually)

Heres my analysis.. hathe wa7da ma tdre wain Allah 7a6ha.. she probably worked for someone from the royal family 'n decided to make a quick buck (like countless others)

Q80-Chill Girl said...


Will do :D looks like an interresting book, thanx dear.

Q80-Chill Girl said...

W. :}

Well you made me more anxious to read it & find out for my self :) as you know forbidden love turned out to be a lie! but still to me it was a good read maybee this book is like that & maybee not :} I will try it & see but thanx for the review.

W. said...


speaking of which.. check out Dr 90210 this week.. itll be about an "arabian" girl who wants to reconstruct her "virginity viel" willa madri wsh gessat-ha

channel E! at night.. 9 or 10 or 11... not sure

Q80-Chill Girl said...


Thanx :} oOo I will watch E! in a few to check when will it b on bchoof shelsalfa @!@

Drunk'n'Gorgeous said...

It IS an interesting book, and no need to thank me! I just want to know what you think of that book after reading it :) As I said before at times I felt indignant but I would never take it personally and suggest nobody does either. It's not healthy, really.

W. said...

i think its on sundays.. not sure though, they seem to change their programmings without prior notice,,,

howeverk if u do find out.. pls email me, ( ma 3alaik amr )

Q80-Chill Girl said...

Well said, nothing in a book should be taken personal & for me if i did i would consider Norma's book one of the most annoying ones because there is alot claimed to be rules from Islam while they are not & so on... I will inshallah get it & after am finished you will see the reviw live here << d3aya mn al7ein ;p.

Q80-Chill Girl said...


Will do as soon as I know :}

J.T said...

but "honour killing" did happen right...? maybe she use fake personal detail to show the truth issue?.....

Q80-Chill Girl said...


thank you for digging up such an old post of mine :D

as for ur comment, she could have written "based on a true story" :>

why claim it was her friend's story? The debate in my post was around her lie and not with the story line and weather it happened or not.

Honor killing does take place in Jordan and other countries but not in this story! and the exaggeration of using honor killing for just KNOWING a man is way too strong for me to understand!! usually when adultery takes place those killings happen, which brings us to the integrity of the writer, why say its a true story, in the time that its not? :)