'The Parisian is a sublime reading experience- delicate, restrained, surpassingly intelligent, uncommonly poised and truly beautiful. It is realism in the tradition of Flaubert and Stendhal - everything that happens feels not so much imagined as ordained. That this remarkable historical epic should be the debut of a writer in her twenties seems impossible, yet it's true. Isabella Hammad is an enormous talent and her book is a wonder.' - Zadie Smith
Isabella Hammad was born in London. She won the 2018 Plimpton Prize for Fiction for her story 'Mr. Can'aan'. Her writing has appeared in Conjunctions and the Paris Review. The Parisian is her first novel.
"Isabella Hammad's remarkably accomplished debut novel very quickly
snares the reader's attention... Hammad is a natural storyteller...
The writing is deeply humane, its wide vision combined with poised
restraint... A story of cultures in simultaneous conflict and
concord, The Parisian teems with riches - love, war, betrayal and
madness - and marks the arrival of a bright new talent." * Guardian
"Breathtaking... Isabella Hammad establishes herself here as a literary force to be reckoned with. The Parisian is, in many ways, an extraordinary achievement." * Irish Times *
"A stunning 576-page debut, both a lush rendering of Palestinian life a century ago under the British Mandate and a sumptuous epic about the enduring nature of love... a small, beautiful, human story blazing against the enormity of the sociopolitical one... a novel you sink into." * Vogue *
"One of the most ambitious first novels to have appeared in years... Written in soulful, searching prose, it's a jam-packed epic... Hammad is a natural social novelist with an ear for lively dialogue as well as an ability to illuminate psychological interiority... Hammad is a writer of startling talent - and The Parisian has the rhythm of life." * Observer *
"The Parisian has an up-close immediacy and stylistic panache that are all the more impressive coming from a London-born writer still in her 20s... There are intimidating 19th-century precedents - Tolstoy, Turgenev, Stendhal... Isabella Hammad has crafted an exquisite novel that, like Midhat himself, delves back into the confusing past while remaining wholly anchored in the precarious present." * New York Times Book Review *