Juliet Samuel looks at chick lit in Saudi Arabia:
Much ado about a book on the love lives, sex and shopping habits of four rich Saudi girls. A modern epistolary novel, it's written as a series of emails sent to a Yahoo! group list serve by a mysterious, lipstick-wearing Saudi woman. In another world, it would be a trivial lip gloss narrative of life as a desirable young woman in Riyadh. But such a story can't avoid being political—and it turns out that chick lit is a convenient vantage point from which to critique Saudi society. Alsanea explores Saudi values in all their mundane invasiveness; this is a world where possessing The Nutty Professor on DVD is a political act, inviting social disgrace. And beyond the picayune restrictions lies blatant hypocrisy: the Saudi elites enforce dressing conventions at home and happily change into chic Western attire on the plane out of Riyadh.