Sand by Paul Majkut


SAND explores the sexual and religious roots of jihadist terrorism. It is a snapshot album of Saudi Arabia in the late 1980s, when contemporary jihadism sprouted in the sands of the Kingdom. It is a novel that is more than the sum of its parts, more than its plot: a mystery centered on a delusional, religious-police detective investigating trouble at a five-star hotel in Riyadh. Graphic descriptions expose the sexual mania that motivates self-jus...

Details Sand

Release DateMay 6th, 2014
PublisherNyx Press

Reviews Sand

  • Jazz
    A gripping story told with artistry. East and West meet in Arabia and the meeting of Moslem fanatics and American and other foreign opportunists is an explosive combination. The story just keeps pounding away at falsehoods and hypocrisy. The novel is sometimes symbolic and surreal, but sometimes it is realistic. Majkut gives insights into 21st century, urban Saudi Arabia the way T. E. Lawrence did for desert rebels a century ago.
  • Jean
    This is the second novel I read by this author. One reviewer for the other novel said that Majkut writes the way he wants and doesn't care what others say and I think that's true. His novels are very experimental and well crafted. This one really gets into what Saudi Arabia is like. Fascinating story told from the inside.
  • Francis
    The women in this novel come in two flavors. Bad or very bad. And the same is true of the men. This is what the writer wanted and it works as a novel but is a little depressing and dark. No humor here.
  • Gabby
    This is the first novel I've read that has Osama bin Laden and his friends as characters. One of them, a magazine censor, is a sex-obsessed central character. Wonderful insights into the dangers of fundamentalist thinking. There are some pretty violent scenes, just a few, but shocking.
  • Ted Frank
    Majkut writes about really yucky characters who you would think couldn't exist. The weird sexually nutty characters in this book are as sad as they are repulsive. A good read.
  • Adam
    The story of such a fierce and uncompromising religious characters is awesome! It was kinda philosophical at times but kept me reading to the end.
  • Ashley Bounoura
    So I won this book in a Goodreads giveaway, which was awesome books! I had a hard time getting into it at first, probably because most of the characters are relatively unlikable in one way or another. But as I read on I found myself being pulled in by the intrigue of the plot, and actually found myself sympathizing and even relating to some of the characters, which really made me think. I loved the character of "the Author". He was...
  • Madison
    Official disclosure: I got this book for free through Goodreads First Reads. Thanks!(Disclaimer part 2: A 3 star rating from me isn't bad; it's actually pretty good. I just read too much to hand out 4s and 5s everywhere.)Sand is...bizarre. Experimental. Weird to read on the subway every morning. It takes a lot of time and patience to wade through over 450 pages of layers on layers of coincidence, allegory, surrealism. It's full of all kinds of cr...
  • Finny
    This book was intriguing from the first page. I have never been to the part of the world the book is set in, yet 'Sand' provides a vivid impression of what it might be like to live there. The imagery in this book is intense. Even when I felt ambivalent about certain characters, I was still interested in them and they felt fully realized as people. I felt like I could taste the sand in the title by the end!If you have always been interested in thi...
  • Rachel Parrott
    “Sand” is a beautiful written novel of life in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia in the 1980’s as East meets West, as secular meets fundamentalism, as reality meets fantasy. There is much darkness here but moments of light in this dynamic and exotic time and place.My copy was a gift from Goodreads First Reads.
  • Sue
    Majkut used alternating narratives in another novel I read. It's called Asterion. But in this novel the appearance of the writer as a character is much more interesting because the character writes the story as he goes along and runs into all sorts of corrupt expats living in Saudi Arabia and local religious crackpots.
  • Tammy
    Beautifully written novel! I found myself emphasizing and sympathizing with characters I would normally loathe. Sand is definitely not a light or forgettable read.