Mayada, Daughter of Iraq

Missing my dearest friend, Mayada, who passed away in 2015. She lived a most interesting life…

Distinctly Uniform

This book by Jean P Sasson like all of her other books has a female protagonist in a middle-eastern setting. This is a true story about Mayada Al-Askari who belongs to the royal family. Her grandfather Sati Al-Husri is a much known and respected Arab nationalist and her paternal grandfather Jafar Pasha Al-Askari was a World War II hero. Coming from such a family, Mayada had known people in the government and officials high up and led a privileged life. She worked as a journalist in a magazine and had met Saddam Hussein twice in person and had been personally awarded by him for her outstanding work.

Slowly as the Saddam regime grew powerful, the condition of people became worse and more and more people fled to nearby countries like Jordan. Mayada’s mother, Salwa was also one among them who moved to Jordan to escape the terror in her homeland. She…

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Princess – a tale of a true heroic woman.

Kingducky's Blog

Princess - Jean Sasson

It is difficult to appreciate the privileges that we have until we acknowledge the cruelty around the world. I am ashamed to say that i never understood the terror anyone went through until reading this book.

Princess by Jean Sasson – This book is one of the most compelling books that has been released so far… This is based on a true story of a Saudi princess who has been hiding under the veil her whole life and finally decided the world had to know the pain and agony the women in Saudi go through. When you read through the book there are times where a normal human being who has been sheilded by such horrific stories would look up in horror.. do things like this happen in this world? Alas it is true.. this book is quite a old book… when i was in school Princess was my first…

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Jean Sasson

Kingducky's Blog

Since the day i remember back to… i used to read… and love it. When it came to reading i was the only child in my household that my parents didnt scream at. To this day my parents still scream at my brothers because of the lack of interest when it comes to reading. 🙂 Only time im regarded as important in my family. So anyway i understand i might not give a superb review as many people might do but im gonna try to do some justice ton these following books. When i was in  School i started reading the Princess trilogy. It was a heart wrenching book that just took my breath away. The books highlighted the life of Princess Sultana and her family. Book 1 showed how she dealt with childhood as a young girl hidden behind the veil. Thrown away from the affections of a father…

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Princess by Jean Sasson

As the author, and a supporter of women worldwide, I am very pleased to see this well-thought out review.

Patrisya M.

Nothing makes me happier than buying books for low prices. There are only a few places where you can purchase cheap books in Dubai. One of my favourite places is House of Prose, a second-hand bookstore, where I bought Princess…a book that you can see in every bookstore around the city.

Through Jean Sasson, Sultana, a member of Saudi Arabian royal family, tells about shocking life behind the vail. She speaks about her own life and experiences of other Saudi women… stories of women glittering with jewels, living in luxury palaces with tens of servants. However, unbelievable wealth is just a cover for lack of freedom and total submission to men.  Women are prisoners of their fathers and brothers, and then of their husbands. Women do not have a right to express their opinions, to work, or to leave the country without ‘master’s permission.

 Without a doubt, the book is heart-…

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Daring to Drive: A Saudi Woman’s Awakening

Excited to have this book ordered — I so admire the many Saudi women who are working to achieve equality…

Saudiwoman's Weblog


I just read Manal Al Sharif’s book Daring to Drive. I knew that it was in the works for a few years and I had expectations and so did many other Saudis. We discussed and speculated what she’ll mention. In my conversations with her, Manal dropped some hints about what she’s writing about. However, the actual book is nothing like I anticipated. I expected that it would be a more general narrative on what it’s like for Saudi women; a more geographically parochial version of Mona Eltahawy’s Headscarves and Hymens. I thought it might focus more on what happened in 2011 and its aftermath. In actuality, the book is a shockingly intimate close-up examination of Manal herself. With childlike sincerity, Manal tells what it’s like growing up poor in Makkah and her volatile childhood home environment. She even recounts her botched circumcision and how the governmental school system…

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Princess by Jean Sasson: Book Review

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A Little Something by Arsh

Princess by Jean Sasson- Book Review by Arsh

One of my favorite books so far, Princess is based on a true story of a Saudi Princess who is considered worthless for being a woman beside having all the wealth of the world. It is about the life of Princess Sultana Al Sa’ud who belongs to the royal house of Saudi Arabia. Being a woman is a shame for Saudi Royals and they keep it a secret when they’re born or bury them alive or if not, they are worthlessly caged. These women are considered slaves of their male masters, the youngest ones get married to the old men and are brutally murdered for smallest allegations.

This book is totally heart-wrenching and you’d want to finish it in one go. It took be 4 days to finish it since I had no time, work and all but still every time I opened the book to read it, I didn’t…

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Such good things going on in the Islamic world for women

Just wanted to leave a brief message which I will add to later on.  Finally, Arab women are taking their place in society.  They are working, becoming involved with government and at the same time, remaining devoted wives and mothers.  Things are changing my friends and I, for one, am so very happy with most of the governments in the area because they are working hard to bring their women into public life, and those women are a great asset for their countries.  Please check back in later for more details!

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Prominent Saudis: Dr. Ghazi Al Qosaibi

I was fortunate to meet this fine man (my husband and I were invited to his home when he was Minister of Health) and there was a crisis at the King Faisal Specialist Hospital and Research Centre. Dr. Ghazi was in a feud with my former boss, Dr. Nizar Feteih and he wanted to ask me some questions about Dr. Feteih. (I had been interviewed by the committee investigating Dr. Feteih.) Although Dr. Feteih could be very much a dictator at the hospital, he loved the hospital and did everything he could to make it the best hospital in the kingdom. Also, I had worked as Dr. Feteih’s right hand in the Medical Affairs Department for a couple of years and felt loyal as he had never been anything but extremely nice to me and my husband, Peter Sasson. I never saw Dr. Feteih do anything illegal or bad against the hospital, although he was a man accustomed to getting his way and at times was too harsh with some of the employees. Despite the fact I was unable/unwilling to turn against Dr. Feteih, Dr. Ghazi was very gracious. I briefly met his German wife, and two sons and a beautiful daughter. I found it interesting that the sons looked German as their mother and the daughter was a dark-haired/dark eyed beauty who looked completely Saudi. I did warn Dr. Ghazi that Dr. Feteih had been exceptionally close to King Khalid during the years I was working at the hospital (King Khalid died in 1982, as we all know) and that Dr. Feteih was also close to King Fahd. Dr. Ghazi brushed aside my concern that he (Dr. Ghazi) would end up losing any feud with Dr. Feteih. In fact. Dr. Ghazi was fired as Health Minister very soon after Peter and I met with him in his home, although a poem Dr. Ghazi had written that indicated the poem was for the eyes of King Fahd, played a role in his firing. Dr. Feteih was later released from his duties at the hospital, so the entire episode was very dramatic and both men paid a huge price for their feud. So much was happening during that time but I’ll save further details for my memoir. However, I will say that I found Dr. Ghazi to be a very intelligent and kindly man, and was very sad to hear of his passing so young a few years ago. I’m going to go now and find the poetry book he presented to me on that night and reread it. He was a very talented poet…(as all Saudi Arabians know.)

Saudiwoman's Weblog


The most prominent of prominent not royal Saudis is Ghazi Al Qosaibi. This is a name that every Saudi knows, young and old. He initially became popular for the reforms he implemented as minister of health, that and his Arabic novels compounded to make him one of the shiniest stars in the Saudi sky.
The first phases of his education were in neighboring Arab countries, Bahrain and Egypt. He then went on to a masters in the US and a PhD from the University of London. He then came back to Riyadh in 1971 to work as an academic at King Saud University. However, that did not last that long because he later sat at many important desks in Saudi; Director General of Saudi Railways Organization, Minister of Industry and Electricity, Minister of Health, Saudi ambassador in Bahrain then UK, Minister of Water, and now Minister of Labour.

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CELEBRATE for two deserving people have won the NOBEL PEACE PRIZE

NICE TO REPORT GOOD NEWS:  Those on the front lines fighting for girls and women tend to agree that nothing is more important than education.  Education changes boys as well as girls.  Without education, few things will change for the youth of the world.

And so it was with great joy that I celebrated when learning that two very deserving people had won the Nobel Peace Prize.  Too many times it appears that politics enter the equation, but this year two people who are changing the world shared the prize.

Malala Yousafzai, the young Pakistani girl who spoke out for education for girls, and who was gunned down by the Taliban for her words, is respected by all who acknowledge the importance of education to create change in the lives of girls and women all over the world.  Young Malala is one of the strongest and most determined young woman the world has seen.  And then there is Kailash Satyarthi, the Indian child rights campaigner, another deserving recipient of the prize, who has been recognized.  This is a man who has saved thousands of young lives.  He is widely respected for his accomplishments.

Both are to be admired and supported.

After traveling the world, and living in Saudi Arabia for 12 years, I agree that nothing is more important in empowering girls and women than education.  While reading about Malala, and the difference education has made in her life, I am reminded of the many conversations I have had with Princess Sultana Al-Saud, a Saudi princess who has fought for girls and women since she was a young girl.  She has always told me that education is the key to changing lives, cultures, countries, and the entire world.  She is so right.

The world has come to know Princess Sultana through the pages of books I have written about her struggles and her victories.  You can read about Princess Sultana and her quest for freedom for girls and women in the four books written about her life.  Additionally, Malala Yousafzai, has written a bestselling book about her life, and I recommend it highly to all who care about peace, gender equality, and all that is good about life.

READ THE FOLLOWING ARTICLE FROM THE BBC, as well as other links following to other news agencies about this grand event:

Pakistani child education activist Malala Yousafzai and Kailash Satyarthi, an Indian child rights campaigner, have jointly won the Nobel Peace Prize.

At the age of just 17, Malala is the youngest ever recipient of the prize.

The teenager was shot in the head by Taliban gunmen in October 2012 for campaigning for girls’ education. She now lives in Birmingham in the UK.

Malala said she was “honoured” to receive the award, saying it made her feel “more powerful and courageous”.

She revealed she found out the news after being called out of her chemistry class at her school in Birmingham.

“I’m really happy to be sharing this award with a person from India,” she said at a news conference, before joking that she couldn’t pronounce Mr Satyarthi’s surname.

The Nobel committee praised the pair’s “struggle against the suppression of children and young people”.

Mr Satyarthi has maintained the tradition of Mahatma Gandhi and headed various forms of peaceful protests, “focusing on the grave exploitation of children for financial gain,” the committee said at the Nobel Institute in Oslo.

The 60-year-old founded Bachpan Bachao Andolan, or the Save the Childhood Movement, which campaigns for child rights and an end to human trafficking.

Reacting to the news, Mr Satyarthi told the BBC: “It’s a great honour for all the Indians, it’s an honour for all those children who have been still living in slavery despite of all the advancement in technology, market and economy.

“And I dedicate this award to all those children in the world.”




BOOKS ABOUT PRINCESS SULTANA Al-SAUD of Saudi Arabia, a Saudi activist for girls and women and education for all

BOOKS ABOUT PRINCESS SULTANA Al-SAUD of Saudi Arabia, a Saudi activist for girls and women and education for all

USA EDITION of my latest book about Saudi women

USA EDITION of my latest book about Saudi women

UK edition of the latest about Saudi women through the voice of Princess Sultana

UK edition of the latest about Saudi women through the voice of Princess Sultana

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Exclusive interview with International Bestselling author Jean Sasson HEADSHOT 3 for BOOK COVER 2014

From writing Princess More Tears to Cry I can tell you that Saudi women are changing their world and that Princess Sultana is bringing their victories public.  Women are driving openly and taking their chances with the mean-spirited clerics, who like nothing better than to harass women.  But the big surprise is that the women of Saudi Arabia have a friend who is sitting on a throne, and the person on the throne is the very forceful king of Saudi Arabia.  Thus far, he has freed all the women who were imprisoned for driving and sentenced to floggings by the religious courts.  This is big news in their world and it is making women bolder than ever.  But all is not perfect because there are many powerful men in Saudi Arabia and some of these men do everything in their power to keep women in purdah.  So, even as we celebrate the happy stories, there are sad tales that will bring tears into the eyes of all but the most hardened.

This is the long awaited follow up to Life of Saudi Princess Sultana, so what you can tell us about this book?  

I can tell you that Princess Sultana used to be the lone voice of women pushing for freedom, but now we learn that other women are gathering their courage and pushing back.  There are many new heroines to celebrate in Saudi Arabia, and you will learn about 10 of those women in this book.  Additionally, the many millions of readers who have fallen in love with Princess Sultana and her family will enjoy the heart-warming stories that centre around her three children, her three grandchildren, as well as other members of her family.  So there is something for everyone in this, the 4th book in the series about Princess Sultana.

Please tell us about the process of gathering all the personal stories for this book.  

This research and interviewing process was so very different from the past three books about the princess.  Close your eyes and try to imagine a palace filled with women and children who all want to tell a writer something interesting that is happening in their country, one of the wealthiest nations in the world, yet, one of the most backward when it comes to the treatment of girls and women.   It was in such a setting where I was told about the stories Princess Sultana wanted included in Princess, More Tears to Cry.  Some of the stories came from the princess’ daughters, while others came from the princess.  Honestly, it was a very noisy environment for a writer.  I needed a quiet time to process facts, but that was not to be.  Finally I found the secret to shutting out all the noise to hear only the person sitting in front of me.  I focused my eyes on that person’s face and soon I could only hear that one important voice.  But I will admit that I missed the old days when everything was so secretive and the princess and I were slipping around like spies from the cold war to get the information clear for me so that I could return to my home office, and carefully write books from the facts I had been given.  While it is more fun now that the secret is out in her own family, it is quite the challenge for this writer!

This is your twelfth book so how much easier is your writing process with each new book you publish? 

Each book I have written carries its own struggle.  Therefore book number twelve was no easier or no more difficult than the previous eleven.

Please can you tell us about when you first met Princess Sultana.  

I met the princess for the first time in 1985 at the Italian Embassy in Saudi Arabia.  She was the only female royal I had ever seen at a western function so that fact alone caught my attention.

Everything of life was exciting then, because I was living in one of the most exotic kingdoms in the world.  I had met other royal princesses when attending royal weddings, but nearly all the Saudi women I had come to know appeared quite shallow, with their interests centering only on designer gowns, expensive jewels and the latest royal gossip.  To meet Sultana was quite the surprise, for she had important things on her mind.  Almost instantly she began talking about the undesirable social issues affecting her country that had been plaguing my own mind for the past seven years since I first arrived in the kingdom.  She talked.  I listened.  Our eyes locked and something told me she would be an important person in my future.  She told me later that she felt the same.  She invited me to visit her in her palace.  Our friendship grew slowly, but within a year I was going with her on holidays to France where we truly bonded, mainly because we are both so passionate about the horrible ills affecting so many women of the world.

Why was it important to you to share personal stories of middle Eastern women for your career?

They became my subjects; I became their hope.  I was living in the Middle East during a very important time for women in the region.  And, don’t forget, in the early days most Saudis were open minded about westerners and wanted to get to know us.  Therefore, I had access to many women, while most journalists had none.  After all, in those days, most journalists were men, and no man would ever allowed in the circle of women.  I believed, and still believe, that it is important for the world to know about the stories of women from the Middle East.  In fact, I would have told these stories even if there was no indication they would be bestsellers.

What have been the most surprising things you have found when writing your books? 

The commonality of the rich and the poor — all women, east and west, press against an invisible force trying to deny them freedom and subject them to the rules of men.



What is next for you? 

I have five books on the drawing board.  And so I will continue to write books that awaken others, so that I can pass the passion to create change to a new generation.  To my mind, nothing is more important, because unless I am a walking miracle, I won’t live forever, and this is a struggle that is far from won.




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