x Abu Dhabi, UAE Friday 21 July 2017

The Art of Forgetting: coping with lost love

The Algerian love doctor Ahlem Mosteghanemi helps heartbroken women move on in The Art of Forgetting.

The Art of Forgetting
Ahlem Mosteghanemi
Bloomsbury Qatar Foundation Publishing
Dh18

For more than a decade, the Algerian writer and novelist Ahlem Mosteghanemi has been the love doctor for females in the Arab world.

As she describes in the foreword to her chatty and heartwarming new book, The Art of Forgetting, her books acted as counsel to the jilted and convinced the broken-hearted that life is worth living following a beau's indiscretions.

Mosteghanemi describes such incidents as the catalyst to pen a book encouraging her sisters to do what men allegedly do best: forget and move on.

Written as a series of small, concise, witty advice columns, Mosteghanemi speaks of the pitfalls stopping women from moving forward.

Her advice ranges from the practical - such as avoiding staying in bed and phoning your ex - to the more esoteric such as practising the surprisingly different methods on how to forget a person or bad memory.

Thankfully, Mosteghanemi warns in the opening pages her book is no feminist diatribe.

In typical tongue-in-cheek fashion she states that she purposely kept the tone accessible to men "to learn from the mistakes of other males on the basis of acquiring bad manners from the bad mannered".