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Longlisted for the PEN Translation Prize.
An award-winning Iraqi writer creates a new world for himself in Seattle in search of lost love.
As the US occupation of Iraq rages, novelist Mortada Gzar, a student at the University of Baghdad, has a chance encounter with Morise, an African American soldier. It’s love at first sight, a threat to them both, and a moment of self-discovery. Challenged by society’s rejection and Morise’s return to the US, Mortada takes to the page to understand himself.
In his deeply affecting memoir, Mortada interweaves tales of his childhood work as a scrap-metal collector in a war zone and the indignities faced by openly gay artists in Iraq with his impossible love story and journey to the US. Marginalized by his own society, he is surprised to discover the racism he finds in a new one. At its heart, I’m in Seattle, Where Are You? is a moving tale of love and resilience.
What the critics say
“Narrator Haaz Sleiman's voice is consistently gentle and sad, yet he also finds the biting humor in this wonderful memoir.… Sleiman performs Gzar's memoir with a vulnerability that is electrifying, drawing the listener ever deeper. The result is an emotional experience of triumph, loss, and heartbreak.” —AudioFile Magazine, Earphones Award Winner
“Wildly inventive…Built on keenly observed cultural, political, and personal details and populated by vivid characters, this book—illustrated throughout with Gzar’s starkly surreal ink drawings—draws readers into a narrative web that is by turns shocking, funny, and deeply moving. A magical tragicomic story of love, sacrifice, and conviction.” —Kirkus Reviews
“An exquisite story of life and lost love…Gzar’s nonlinear narrative and lyrical prose convey his deep desire to reunite with his lover…Hard to put down and difficult to forget.” —Publishers Weekly (starred review)
What listeners say about I'm in Seattle, Where Are You?Average Customer Ratings
Reviews - Please select the tabs below to change the source of reviews.
- Tech Worker
A glimpse into a life and love beyond imagination
A circuitous memoir, very deep and moving . I'm so glad I stuck with it
- Anonymous User
Review: I’m In Seattle, Where are you?
Interesting: the trials and successes of a gay male.
The reader was a little difficult to understand at times— not sure it was the author— don’t think so— as an interpreter of the book is listed.
I would like to have seen Mortazda find his American friend in Seattle— that’s life— it doesn’t always turn out the way you would like.
I’m assuming this is a true to life story but fiction never the less.
Overall, well written.