The Arrogant Years: One Girl's Search for Her Lost Youth, from Cairo to Brooklyn

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9780061803673: The Arrogant Years: One Girl's Search for Her Lost Youth, from Cairo to Brooklyn

“[Lagnado writes] in crystalline yet melodious prose.”
New York Times

Lucette Lagnado’s acclaimed, award-winning The Man in the White Sharkskin Suit (“[a] crushing, brilliant book” —New York Times Book Review) told the powerfully moving story of her Jewish family’s exile from Egypt. In her extraordinary follow-up memoir, The Arrogant Years, Lagnado revisits her first years in America, and describes a difficult coming-of-age tragically interrupted by a bout with cancer at age 16. At once a poignant mother and daughter story and a magnificent snapshot of the turbulent ’60s and ’70s, The Arrogant Years is a stunning work of memory and resilience that ranges from Cairo to Brooklyn and beyond—the unforgettable true story of a remarkable young woman’s determination to push past the boundaries of her life and make her way in the wider world.

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From the Back Cover :

The author of the award-winning The Man in the White Sharkskin Suit—hailed by the New York Times book review as a “crushing, brilliant book”—returns with this, the extraordinary follow-up memoir

In The Man in the White Sharkskin Suit, Lucette Lagnado offered a heartbreaking portrait of her father, Leon, a successful Cairo boulevardier who was forced to take flight with his family during the rise of the Nasser dictatorship, and of her family’s struggle to rebuild a new life in a new land.

In this much-anticipated new memoir, Lagnado tells the story of her mother, Edith, coming of age in a magical old Cairo of dusty alleyways and grand villas inhabited by pashas and their wives. Then Lagnado revisits her own early years in America—first, as a schoolgirl in Brooklyn’s immigrant enclaves, where she dreams of becoming the fearless Mrs. Emma Peel of The Avengers, and later, as an “avenging” reporter for some of America’s most prestigious newspapers. A stranger growing up in a strange land, when she turns sixteen Lagnado’s adolescence is further complicated by cancer. Its devastating consequences would rob her of her “arrogant years”—the years defined by an overwhelming sense of possibility, invincibility, and confidence. Lagnado looks to the women sequestered behind the wooden screen at her childhood synagogue, to the young coeds at Vassar and Columbia in the 1970s, to her own mother and the women of their past in Cairo, and reflects on their stories as she struggles to make sense of her own choices.

About the Author :

Lucette Lagnado is the author of the critically-acclaimed Man in the White Sharkskin Suit, a memoir of her Egyptian-Jewish father; in this much-anticipated new memoir she explores the world of her Egyptian-Jewish mother Edith. She is also the coauthor of Children of the Flames: Dr. Josef Mengele and the Untold Story of the Twins of Auschwitz. She is a senior special writer and investigative reporter for the Wall Street Journal. She resides with her husband, Douglas Feiden, in Sag Harbor and New York City.

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Lagnado, Lucette
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