"Khoury is the sort of novelist whose name is inseparable from a city. Los Angeles has Joan Didion and Raymond Chandler, and Istanbul, Orhan Pamuk. The beautiful, resilient city of Beirut belongs to Khoury."--Laila Lalami, "Los Angeles Times"
"Because the world is the way it is, because whole groups of people can be maligned, neglected, ignored, for too many years, we need the voice of Elias Khoury--detailed, exquisite, humane--more than ever. Read him. Without fail, read him."--Naomi Shihab Nye
Why was the corpse of Khalil Ahmed JAber found in the municipal garbage dump? Why had this civil servant disappeared weeks before his horrific death? Who was this man? A journalist begins to piece together an answer by speaking with his widow, a local engineer, the concierge, the garbage man who discovered him, the doctor who performed the autopsy, and a young soldier. Their stories emerge, along with the horrors of the bloody civil war and ravaging effects on the human psyche. With empathy and pain, Elias Khoury reveals the havoc the war has wreaked on Beirut and its inhabitants, as well as the resilience of a people.
Born in Beirut in 1948, Elias Khoury is the author of over a dozen novels, four volumes of literary criticism, and three plays. "His Gate of the Sun"--deemed "a genuine masterwork" by "The New York Times Book Review"--was a 2006 "New York Times" Notable Book and was named Best Book of the Year by both "The Christian Science Monitor "and the "San Francisco Chronicle." He is a Global Distinguished Professor of Middle Eastern and Islamic Studies at New York University.
Maia Tabet was born in Lebanon and is a sometime literary translator and a professional cook, now living in the U.S. She is the translator of Khoury's first novel to be published in English, "Little Mountain," and has also translated the poetry of Adonis.