Adam’s Mistress by Moncef Louhaibi. Reviewed by Alchourouk.

Adam’s Mistress Book Cover

Publications: Achiket Adam seduces Louhaibi.

Under the serires “Ouyoun El Mouassira” issued by Dar El Janoub, a book titeld Achiket Adam (Adam’s Mistress) was published by Moncef Louhaibi which is a Facebookian journey of two persons from two different worlds—two bodies seeking a virtual love story.

The novel was introduced by Slaheddine Boujeh. It is a journey seeking another image of the country that they willingly draw together away from reality.

It is a relationship that stemmed out of doubt, and curiosity. Each person was compelled by the desire to unmask the real face of his/ her interlocutor, and gradually sneak into his/her true world away from pseudonyms and bleary images.

Consecutive messages and instant chats in which each person confess his/her secrets to the other which lead to the birth of a friendship, and emotions that make them close despite the distance between them. Thus Facebook becomes their private corner to meet, and exchange messages.

From cover to content, the writer created a special touch for his novel which made it unique and dissimilar to any already published text.

The novel came cushy raising several social and political issues in a unique style, despite the fact that it appeared in the first pages as a mere love talk between a man and a woman. However, it lately became a mix of seriousness, and humour, a talk about literature, and politics, asking questions, a search for answers, and a presence of real characters.

Who is “the truth?” And who is “the illusion?” Si Elhabib (Mr.Elhabib), the mysterious Facebookian man or Moncef Louhaibi, the writer of the text? Or are they two faces of the same man who is searching for himself, and at the same time, for an idea of a fictional text?


I try not to be a narcissist, but I love that we dally, and to be dallied with.


Is there any art that exists without narcissism? But the one who pretends more knowledge is the one who is more ignorant. Inflating the image of the self is about to become a rule in understanding the selves, which backs up our ignorance.

It is a conversation that we are unable to discern its seriousness from its humour? Is it a game chosen from the beginning by the writer or a mere chance that drags Si Elhabib into a Facebookian relationship that is turned into a text by Moncef Louhaibi?

The novel ends without knowing the truth. Who is Ilhem? Who is Si Elhabib? They remain mysterious, and each one of them keeps his/her own truth.


I’m on Facebook, Ilhem.


Don’t forget Si Elhabib !
Effacer l’historique de la discussion instantanée

Originally appeared in the Tunisian daily Alchourouk 11/04/2012 by Alchourouk culture section.

You can read the original text in Arabic here.

Translated from Arabic by Ali Znaidi.


About aliznaidi

Ali Znaidi lives in Redeyef, Tunisia. He graduated with a BA in Anglo-American Studies in 2002. He teaches English at Tunisian public secondary schools. He writes poetry and has an interest in literature, languages, and literary translations. His work has appeared here and there and is scheduled to appear elsewhere . At moments of revelation, he smokes and drinks green tea with mint while pondering.
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7 Responses to Adam’s Mistress by Moncef Louhaibi. Reviewed by Alchourouk.

  1. Hello this book sounds very interesting. Is it available in English? If so I’d love to read it for A Year of Reading the World. Could you let me know where I can get hold of it if it has been translated? Thanks

  2. Pingback: Two Tunisian Novels Are Nomintated for ‘the Arabic Booker.’ | Tunisian Literature (in English)

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