REVIEW: As Long as the Lemon Trees Grow
Updated: Mar 27
Double win for As Long As The Lemon Trees Grow as it was a Book of the Month backlog book AND fit into one of the categories for the Diversity Across Genres challenge. It was such a gem, and I am still wondering why I put it off so long!
Salama's life was normal. Key word being "was." That was before the cries for freedom rang out across Syria and changed her life forever. Before she found herself working long hours at a hospital as a nineteen year old not-yet-graduated pharmacist. Before the fear took over.
Oh friends. This book ripped my heart into so many pieces. I immediately fell in love with Salama, and her story continued to grow on me as it progressed. She was faced with some really hard decisions, and some of her decisions I really couldn't blame her given the circumstances. They showed off her flaws, as well as her strength. Her tough and steady side, as well as the tender and fragile character.
Zoulfa Katouh masterfully wrote a book for the ages. There were several moments that were so uniquely done, and worked perfectly. Not only did she make me smile, laugh, get angry, and weep, but my jaw literally dropped open. Her execution of this novel was stunning.
As Long As The Lemon Trees Grow is such a masterpiece and I am positive it will stick with me for a long time. It was my favorite read of February, and I'm already predicting it will be one of my top recommendations this year. If you like books similar to The Kite Runner, you should run to read this book.
What other books do you think are in this similar vein?
CW: war stories, rape, death, ptsd, child abuse, starvation