Gerry Tebben writes:
"I came across a book review in the current issue of Aramco World and thought it might interest E-Sylum readers. I don't read many novels,
but I think I'm going to make an exception for one that involves a book printed on counterfeit currency paper. The only analog I can think of is some late 18th, early 19th century
French books printed on leftover assignat paper."
Thanks. I couldn't locate the review online, but found this at Publisher's Weekly. The book is available on Amazon. It was published in 2018. -Editor
Printed in Beirut
Jabbour Douaihy, trans. from Arabic by Paula Haydar. Interlink, $15 trade paper (224p) ISBN 978-1-62371-990-6
Aspiring author Farid Abu Shaar, the hero of this entertainingly jaundiced look at Beirut's publishing and printing industry from Lebanese novelist Douaihy (Chased
Away), undergoes a series of swift, comical, and brutal face-to-face rejections of his handwritten manuscript, The Book to Come, which is contained in a red notebook
and about whose contents the reader learns nothing. At last he calls on Karam Brothers Press, whose owner, Abdallah Karam, also rejects The Book to Come but offers Farid a
job as a copy editor, which he accepts.
Abdallah's beautiful and aloof wife, Persephone Melki, becomes fascinated by Farid and the notebook he always keeps with him. When Farid just once forgets his notebook,
Persephone finds it and has a copy of it printed on expensive paper. That precious copy is left on Farid's desk with no explanation, and Farid later determines that the paper is
the same used to counterfeit €20 notes, and he's swept into a police investigation. Douaihy illuminates Lebanon's tumultuous recent history in brief but telling passages using the
fates of Persephone, Farid, and Farid's book as his compass. Bemused readers will be both enlightened and charmed.
To read the complete article, see:
Printed in Beirut (https://www.publishersweekly.com/978-1-62371-990-6)
For a longer article about the book, see:
Printed in Beirut (http://www.rayaagency.org/clients/douaihy-jabbour/printed-in-beirut/)
For more information, or to order, see:
Printed in Beirut (https://www.amazon.com/Printed-Beirut-Jabbour-Douaihy/dp/1623719909)
Wayne Homren, Editor
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