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Fencing with the King by Diana Abu-Jaber

The King of Jordan is turning 60! How better to celebrate the occasion than with his favorite pastime --- fencing --- and with his favorite sparring partner, Gabriel Hamdan. Amani, a divorced poet, jumps at the chance to accompany her father to his homeland for the King’s birthday. Her father’s past is a mystery to her --- even more so since she found a poem on blue airmail paper slipped into one of his old Arabic books, written by his mother, a Palestinian refugee who arrived in Jordan during World War I. Her words hint at a long-kept family secret, carefully guarded by Uncle Hafez, an advisor to the King, who has quite personal reasons for inviting his brother to the birthday party. The Hamdan brothers must face a reckoning, with themselves and with each other --- one that almost costs Amani her life.