Lifted by the Great Nothing

Karim Dimechkie

Lifted by the Great Nothing
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Lifted by the Great Nothing

Karim Dimechkie

A heartwarming, heartbreaking story of a young Lebanese-American man coming of age under a loving roof (and a very big lie) and coming to terms with his country’s-and his own-violent past.

Max lives with his father, Rasheed, a sweet, funny man who fled Lebanon’s civil war for New Jersey when Max was a baby. Rasheed is enamoured of his idea of America - baseball and barbeques - and has tried to shed his Lebanese heritage completely. When we are in America, ‘Reed’ tells his son, we are Americans.

Rasheed has a singular purpose in life - to provide Max with a happy childhood. Though Max can’t be made happy by the treehouse and musical instruments his father offers, he recognises his father’s need and assures him - as sincerely as he is able - that he is indeed happy, ‘too happy’, as Reed would have it.

Max has always believed his mother was murdered by burglars in Lebanon, but when he turns seventeen, he learns from Rasheed’s ex-girlfriend that his father has been lying to him. Max’s father has secrets dating from the war that have grave consequences relevant to Max’s life today. As Max begins searching for the truth, from suburban America to Beirut and Paris, he unravels his true history.

Poignant, surprising and beguiling Lifted by the Great Nothing is a tale of surprising love stories and unsettling misadventures, of re-evaluation and renewal.

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