Some Dream for Fools

Some Dream for Fools - Faiza Guene This loosely structured novel uses lots of slang, non sequiturs, and some outrageous imagery -- all from the tongue of twenty-something narrator Ahleme -- to illuminate the adaptation of struggling Algerians to their new lives in France. Woven between Ahleme's criticisms of the boys she meets to date, the friends whose spending outpaces her income, and the family she struggles to help adapt to their lives in Paris' outskirts, are subtle reminders of the xenophobia and outright prejudice that confront immigrants in a world still focused on a nebulously defined 'War on Terror.' The heavier aspects of "Some Dream for Fools," however, easily give way to more accessible stories of family loyalty and economic struggle.In fact, the novel succeeds because it is much more a universal coming of age story than it is an attempt to write a political novel. Ahleme shares a voice with a long literary line of questionably educated but wholly spirited, angst-ridden young adults struggling, as Holden Caufield did in "Cather in the Rye," with the phonies and frauds that can seem the only representatives of an uncaring and insincere adult world."Some Dream for Fools" has a freshness to its voice, an easy and enjoyable humor, and an unvarnished sincerity in Ahleme's narration that may not quite elevate the novel to literature, but certainly create an engaging world that is accessible, enjoyable, and eye-opening to those whose existence the reader might otherwise ignore.