LibraryThing Review. User Review - yeremenko - LibraryThing. A shameful attempt to cash in a very real problem. Norma Khouri has been revealed to be a. Dalia was an Arabian Muslim living with her family in Amman, Jordan. Two months after her 26th birthday, Dalia was the victim of an honor killing at the hands of her father. Norma Khouri Albqaeen's book is a gift to the memory of her life-long friend. Forbidden Love [Norma Khouri] on *FREE* shipping on qualifying offers.

Forbidden Love Norma Khouri Ebook

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Forbidden Love was a very good book because it made me more aware of some of . Some background: Norma Khouri is a Catholic from Jordan, whose best. Get this from a library! Forbidden love. [Norma Khouri]. Forbidden Love is a book written by Norma Khouri, purporting to tell a true story about her . Create a book · Download as PDF · Printable version.

Since its publication in , Forbidden Love has sold more than , copies worldwide, and its harrowing descriptions of Khouri's spirited friend Dalia, killed by her father after a chaste affair with an army officer, have moved festival audiences to tears.


The problem to which the book calls attention is a very real one: some two dozen women are victims of such killings in Jordan each year. But Dalia was not one of them, said Ms Husseini.

She said in a brief statement: "I completely and utterly deny these allegations and can prove they are false beyond any doubt. But even during early publicity for the book, Khouri's distinct US accent stood out. She explained it as the result of studying at the American school in the Jordanian capital, Amman, where teaching is in English.

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But there is no record of her ever being there. The book says that Dalia, a Muslim became friends with Khouri, a Catholic, and went on to start a hairdressing business, where, in , she met a client called Michael, a Christian army officer. Chaperoned by Khouri, Michael and Dalia carried on a chaste and clandestine liaison, but after months of surveillance by Dalia's brother they were seen holding hands.

Retribution was inevitable. But Norma Khouri is a fake, and so is Forbidden Love. With Australian sales approaching ,, the book told of her lifelong friendship with a girl named Dalia in Amman, Jordan. In their 20s, Khouri wrote, she and Dalia started a hairdressing salon together.

Dalia met and fell in love with Michael, a Christian army officer.

When their chaste affair was discovered, Dalia was murdered - stabbed 12 times - by her father. Norma fled Jordan to Athens, where she said she wrote her book in internet cafes, and ultimately to Australia, where her publisher Random House sponsored her for a temporary residence visa.

Advertisement Khouri, now 34, spent much of retelling this story, reducing listeners to tears and anger, in interviews, book festivals, bookshops and other events. She toured the world with the story, from appearing on network television in the US to being selected for a citywide book club in Adelaide. While making her new home at a secret location in Queensland and fearing for her life, Khouri became a standard-bearer for oppressed Arab women and triggered a publishing trend of similar books.

Bestseller's lies exposed

The truth is very different, and may affect Khouri's legal residency status in Australia. She has a US passport and lived from until in Chicago.

She is married with two children, 13 and She has four American siblings and a mother who are desperate to hear news from her. But she has managed to conceal this double life from her publishers, her agent, lawyers in several continents, the Australian Department of Immigration and, until now, the public.

Her mother, Asma, remembers her estranged daughter as a girl who "kept deep secrets". Norma's privacy has a reason: not to protect her safety, but to guard her secrets.

Honor Lost: Love And Death In Modern Day Jordan

Khouri's hoax will take its place in a long Australian tradition of literary fraud, from Ern Malley to Helen Darville-Demidenko. But no other fraudulent book has had such wide sales or impact, and in Darville's case the deception only involved her persona, not her book. Khouri has misled the world both on the page and in person.

Suspicion first arose in Jordan, where readers posted on websites their belief that so much in the book was inaccurate, its factual basis was in doubt. A Jordanian women's group carried out some investigations, discovering that Khouri entered and left Jordan briefly in but may not have been there at the time of the book's events.

She denied she had ever lived in America, nor been there before a publicity tour in She said the records were "planted" to trick the Jordanian Government into giving her travel documents to escape. Subsequently, the Herald discovered records of Chicago real estate transactions listing Norma and John Toliopoulos as husband and wife. But as comprehensive as these were, as long as they remained solely on paper they did not necessarily contradict Norma's explanation.

Visiting the addresses this month, however, the Herald found members of her family, neighbours and acquaintances who remembered Norma from her 27 years in Chicago, from age three to Her year-old mother keeps dozens of photos of the daughter who disappeared in and has not spoken to her since.

Asma's one hope, she told the Herald, was for reconciliation.


Asked how she coped with living secretly, Khouri once said: "It is very stressful and tiring, and I would not recommend it to anyone. Yesterday the Herald put the results of its investigation to Khouri, and she continued to deny she had an American family. Despite the photos, interviews with family and acquaintances, public records of vehicle and real estate ownership and a US marriage, she said her mother, Asma, lived in Jordan.

In Forbidden Love, Khouri told how she and Dalia were oppressed by patriarchal Jordanian laws, which protected Dalia's father from prosecution for the alleged murder. Since the book's publication she has embellished the story, saying the only family member she speaks to is an aunt in Jordan and that male relatives might kill her if they found her. She told an interviewer: "I know that my mother would support what I'm doing. And it would be nice to have him be proud of me some day, instead of ashamed of me.

The Herald's month investigation found that Majid Bagain, a machinist, took his wife Asma and their daughter Norma from Jordan to America in Majid and Asma separated in and he returned to Jordan.

They divorced in Asma, now 64, a retired nurse who had open-heart surgery two years ago and now suffers from diabetes, has lived in south-west Chicago since the family came from Jordan and shares a townhouse in South Long Street with Norma's youngest brother Will, who was born in America in Aside from a handful of emails sent to Diana, Norma has not contacted her family since she left Chicago suddenly about four years ago, at the time she began to write Forbidden Love.

Until then, Norma lived a comparatively unremarkable suburban Chicago life, finishing her secondary education at a Catholic school before "studying computers", her mother says, for four years. She worked in a range of low-paying jobs before meeting John Toliopoulos, a Greek-American who, according to Illinois motor vehicle records, drove a Chevrolet Celebrity. They had a daughter, Zoe, in , and a son, Christopher, in Norma and John married on November 27, , in Chicago.

Through the s - at the time of Dalia's "murder" - Norma and John embarked on a series of property transactions, downloading and refinancing houses near Asma's in , and Khouri's hoax will take its place in a long Australian tradition of literary fraud, from Ern Malley to Helen Darville-Demidenko.

Khouri has misled the world both on the page and in person. I never dreamed that my time with her would be cut short, or that my life would be a journey down this path, but I realize that she left me with a mission But for women, progress is negligible.

Director Anna Broinowski tells the story of how Khouri's book became a best-seller, and then follows Khouri to Jordan. Several readers wrote on message boards that much of the book didn't ring true, and others located 73 factual errors, anachronisms, and exaggerations e. At the age of twenty-five, she unexpectedly fell in love with Michael, a major in the Royal Army, and a Catholic. In Forbidden Love, Khouri told how she and Dalia were oppressed by patriarchal Jordanian laws, which protected Dalia's father from prosecution for the alleged murder.