“[P]age-turning, heart-worming plot.” Women’s Review of Books magazine Vol33, No. 4, July/August 2016

“[F]ramed by the title and recurring references, almonds serve as a metaphor for Palestine, referring to the fertile orchards left behind and the nostalgia felt by their former cultivators. Calling the book “Bitter Almonds” expands the metaphor to cover the refugees’ disappointments and hard experience, as well as the plot’s unifying theme — a great love that must traverse a long, difficult path to be fulfilled.” Read full review in The Jordan Times

Bitter Almonds is a poignant exposition of Palestinian Arabs living in perpetual exile from their homeland. This is another historical fiction story on a subject contrary to what readers usually hear and read about from this war-torn corner of the Middle East, where residents are currently being forced into exile again. Recommended reading!” Read full review by Historical Novel Society

“[t]he novel deals poignantly with both the issue of drawing the boundaries of responsibility along familial lines and, by extension, along national lines, in the sense that filial responsibility is tied to national identity. In doing so, it offers a hopeful glimpse into the possibilities of family-building and belonging beyond blood-bound ties, which has profound implications for developing the larger, social, global family.” See full review in the Middle East Monitor

“Lilas Taha’s great gift in BITTER ALMONDS is to create characters and scenes so richly resonant with life and vitality, that the complicated, lush world of the Middle East feels as tangible and close as any world you are living in. Crucial in our strange days? Perhaps more than anything.”

– Naomi Shihab Nye
Author of Habibi

“An inthralling mix of history and Palestinian culture. Riveting.” In The City: Short book review in The Lady

“Both an engaging romance and a convincing period drama.” Read full review of Lilas Taha’s bitter-sweet story about Palestinians in Damascus in The National

“Lilas Taha’s Bitter Almonds is the gripping story of Palestinian exiles in Damascus who search for a sense of home and belonging. Set against the backdrop of political upheavals and wars, the author goes beyond headline news and skillfully portrays the characters as fully-realized human beings who cope with tangled relationships bound by complicated social customs. Written with compassion and a keen awareness of matters of the heart, this is a beautiful and moving tribute to the strength of the human spirit and the endearing power of love.”

-Ann Weisgraber
Author of The Personal History of Rachel Dupree, and The Promise


Join me for a conversation with Georgetwon University in Qatar on January 24, 2018 at 6:00 p.m

GU workshop2

Join me to discuss rhetorical devices uses on Thursday, October 26, 3-5 pm at Tracy Gee Community Center as part of the Houston Writers Guild Fall/Winter Seminar Series. Free to all Houston writers. Click here for more details.


Let’s help out Houston residents affected by hurricane Harvey. All proceeds will be donated to the Harvey Relief Fund. Starting date pushed to September 16. Let’s work together on Novel Writing at the Fig Writer’s Studio in Houston. For registration and more details click here


Had uplifting and deep discussions with the book club ladies of the American Association of University Women AAUW- Fort Bend chapter on July 3, 2017.

AAUW-Fort Bend

“وفي ثنايا الرواية تفيض الروح الإنسانية والنضالات المعقدة التي يخوضها الأشخاص العاديون وهم يحاولون التغلب على ظروف حياتهم الاستثنائية” – More on Aljazeera Arabic المزيد على

“A love story rooted in history and Palestinian culture, Bitter Almonds is inspired by the tremulous events in the Middle East and author Lilas Taha’s family history.” – read more about Bitter Almonds in the Gulf-Times

Proud to announce that Bitter Almonds won the 2017 International Book Award in the Fiction-Multicultural category.




Sincere thanks to the ladies of AAUW West Harris County Branch book club for the warm welcome, thoughtful discussion and powerful encouragement. March, 2017.


Sincere thanks to the members of the American Association of University Women AAUW Fort Bend chapter, Texas for an enlivening and heartwarming discussion. Honored to have been invited and included, February 2017.



Taha will give a workshop on novel writing in Houston every Saturday in September, 2017 at The Fig Writers Studio. For full details on the interactive workshop click here


A lively discussion, fantastic setting and a wonderful book club group at Nofa Creative Space, Amman Jordan.


Taha is honored to be chosen Person of the Month by the National Arab American Women’s Association NAAWA for the month of September 2016. Read full article here.

Bitter Almonds is out with a new look in paperback and eBook (Kindle and Kobo)

Bitter Almonds paperback 2


Bitter Almonds is now available in large print by Ulverscroft Publishing Ltd

ABC Treehut in The Hague, The Netherlands, in partnership with HBKU Press, hosted a reading and book signing for Palestinian-American author, Lilas Taha. Ms Taha read from her latest novel, Bitter Almonds. Click here for details.


Reading and book signing on April 16, 2016 at 6:00 pm at TIRAZ Centre, Amman, Jordan.


BITTER ALMONDS chosen as one of FreshFiction’s Best Reads in January!

BITTER ALMONDS is at #9 on the list by for January 2016’s 13 best YA books to read when the snow inevitably falls.

Meet author Lilas Taha on Saturday, January 23, 2 p.m. at your Sugar Land HPB. Lilas will discuss and sign her new novel Bitter Almonds. Hardback copies available for purchase starting January 19 as specially-priced new items while supplies last.


Norwegian bitter almonds new

BITTER ALMONDS is translated into the Norwegian language and is published by Cappelen Damm AS