Out of Egypt: A Memoir
Aciman has written a touching and affectionate portrait detailing the lives of his flamboyant Jewish family, from its bold arrival in Alexandria to its defeated exodus three generations later. In elegant and witty prose, Aciman introduces us to the marvelous eccentrics who shaped his life--his uncle, two grandmothers, and an aunt.
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Set in luxuriant cosmopolitan Alexandria, this richly colored memoir chronicles the exploits of a flamboyant Jewish family from its bold arrival in Egypt at the turn of the century to its defeated exodus three generations later. In elegant and witty prose, Andre Aciman introduces us to the Olympian figures who shaped his life: Uncle Vili, the strutting daredevil, by turns soldier, salesman, Italian Fascist, and British spy; the two grandmothers, the Princess and the Saint, who gossip in six languages; the father, a diffident capitalist who considers converting to Islam to maintain his Alexandrian dolce vita; Aunt Flora, the German refugee who warns that Jews lose everything "at least twice in their lives.