Dina Al-Hidiq Zebib
Outskirts Press (2015)
Reviewed by Susan Violante for Reader Views (05/15)
Article first published as Book Review: ‘Crossroads’ by Dina Al-Hidiq Zebib on Blogcritics.
“Crossroads,” a novel by Dina Al-Hidiq Zebib, is the story of Sara, a successful woman who finds her life’s journey turning out differently than she planned. Struggling with herself internally, she strives to learn what matters to her most. Not knowing where else to turn, she goes to see a therapist. It is from her visits with the therapist that Sara begins to narrate her life story.
Sara had been heavily influenced by her grandmother, who exposed her to art and culture at an early age. Profoundly interested and curious about both, she follows her heart and passion, graduating with a double major in history. Listening to her grandmother’s stories all of her life had been a true learning experience that opened her mind to a world she loved so much.
Soon after graduation Sara finds a great job, dedicating herself to it completely. As time passes however, she starts feeling the need for a spiritual change. She searches for answers behind her emotions in the silence and stillness of prayer – answers she feels she needs in order to achieve happiness, and learn more about herself. Sara finds that love has been the greatest force behind all she had done, and when she finally finds her soulmate, her life feels abundantly happy. Within a few years however, Sara and her husband Hani both become so busy with their jobs they soon lose focus of their life together.
It is very challenging for a couple not to lose their way and maintain the flame of love, especially these days when lives are booked solid with work, kids, societal obligations, etc. It can be easy to forget what brought them together in the first place, love. We should never get distracted by what is going on outside our homes, and pay attention to those little things that helped us build love in the first place. Along the journey, if we encounter a situation or stumbling block that forces us to take a detour, we should look inside ourselves, feel our hearts and express our thoughts to our loved ones.
I loved “Crossroads” by Dina Al-Hidiq Zebib. It is a nicely detailed and romantic piece of contemporary women’s fiction, and will totally submerge readers in what Sara and Hani go through during the different phases of their lives. I am certain that many readers will find this story as helpful as I did. The combination of well written narrative, realistic characters, and true-life situations make it an interesting read. I am so grateful I came across this book and recommend it as a five star read!