The Syrian Virgin (Review)

The Syrian Virgin (Review)

Hi there!

Title: The Syrian Virgin
Author:  Zack Love
Publisher:  Self-published

Published Date:  6th November 2014
Rating: 3 Stars

*Thank you to the author for the review copy*
This book is on a 99 cent sale right now! Here is the authors message: “The Syrian Virgin” has nearly 100 outstanding reviews and, in just a few weeks, will be available at retail sites beyond Amazon. As a thank you, author Zack Love is offering part 1 of this gripping saga for just $0.99 (until January 20). Enjoy this intense story of a love triangle and a forbidden student-teacher relationship set against a tapestry of events ripped straight from the headlines. “The Syrian Virgin” will take you on an emotional journey like no other. Download your copy using these links:
Amazon (UK):

Synopsis:  Anissa is traumatized by the most brutal
conflict of the 21st Century: the Syrian Civil War. In 2012, Islamists in Homs
terrorize a Syrian-Christian community and destroy everything that a young
woman holds dear. Narrowly escaping death, Anissa restarts her devastated life
as a college student in NY. She is bewildered and lost — a virgin in every

But despite her inexperience with men and life in the United States, Anissa is
quickly drawn to two powerful individuals: Michael Kassab, the Syrian-American
leader working to found the first Mideast Christian state, and Julien Morales,
her Columbia University professor who runs a $20 billion hedge fund.

Complicating matters, Michael is still attached to his ex-girlfriend and Julien
is the most sought after bachelor in Manhattan (and has hidden demons even his
therapist can’t extract). Anissa’s heart and her communal ties pull her in
different directions, as she seeks hope and renewal in a dark world.

WARNING: This book is about a young woman’s difficult journey: her escape from
Syria’s Civil War, her transition to a new a country, and the relationships
that she forms along the way, including her romantic interests in two very
different men. The story is set against the backdrop of the Syrian Civil War and
makes reference to violent acts, sometimes in detail. There is some occasional
profanity and a few scenes that depict sexual intimacy. Accordingly, the
recommended minimum age for readers is 16. The novel might be compared to books
like “The Diary of Anne Frank” or “The Kite Runner.”

Review: I
actually read this book on the suggestion of one of my blog followers, Letty,
who wanted to know what this book was like. Thank you for the suggestion! As
soon as I looked into it I wanted to try it. I wanted to know more about the
situation in Syria because personally, I didn’t feel like I knew enough.

This book was pretty good. It was written in diary format
with two alternating points of view, but mainly Anissa’s. I really liked the
main character, Anissa. She was a brave girl, someone who was hard working and
determined to not let the society she ended up in sway her judgment and her own
morals. She wasn’t someone who conformed to other people, and you know how much
I respect that! So, awesome main character here,

Nonetheless, this book kind of bordered on having a love
triangle? It never veered that way completely, but it dabbled in the idea of
having one. In the second book (there will be one!) I think the love triangle
will be clearer and more important. For now, if you are a love triangle hater
than you needn’t worry 😉

Sometimes when I read this I felt like it was a bit of an
important dump. Like we were being shot a lot of information all at once just
so we could learn more about Syria, and like there wasn’t enough fiction thrown
in to disguise it. There was a lot of emotion in this novel too, especially
because it is a situation that causes me to empathise. I felt like the author
could’ve added even more in there in places.

Michael was a character I didn’t like too much. Mainly
because of some opinions he holds to later on, and I didn’t like his reasoning
for breaking up with his original girlfriend. At first I liked him and then
that gradually chipped away the more we learned. I feel like this was exactly
how Anissa felt in some places as well though, which is why this might just be
some effective writing.

Julian was also very open with his therapist. You should
always be because they need to know everything possible about you. But there is
a line there and I am not sure people would’ve shared that in real life.

This was also a very philosophic read which made me think
in places, making it more memorable. I wondered, how far should we be prepared
to go for a good cause? This is something that is debated in the novel and it
made me think about how far I would go. It’s one of the things I loved about
it. This was based off of real happenings in a way that made me think about the
book and remember it after I had closed the book itself.
There were some sexual mentions in the story, and some randomly explicit moments, but not too many. I think this book was mostly focused on Anissa trying to find out her purpose, and who/what would get her there. It doesn’t focus too much on the religion.


The ending was abrupt as if it was simply cut off. I know
there will be a sequel, but it would’ve been nice for it to have been tied up a
bit nicer. Overall, a good, informative and thoughtful reader. I wonder what
part two has in store.
Author Links:
Find Zack on Facebook and Twitter!

Olivia’s Question: Do you like books that leave you
thinking afterward?

Olivia-Savannah x

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