From the smart, curious, always interested and interesting publisher Peirene, this book is the result of a writing workshop with refugees in the Shatila camp in Beirut. This is a kaleidoscope of honest, raw stories. The editing and translations are diamond-sharp, it is written with the simplicity of economy, and it delivers a punch.
For each book sold, 50p goes to the Lebanese-based charity Basmeh and Zeitooneh (The Smile and the Olive)
‘This remarkable novel isn’t about the refugee voice; it is born from it and told through it.’
author of The Kite Runner
We force ourselves to live here – forced not free.
The concrete buildings huddle in mismatched rows
And between them an alley snakes its way through.
We’re stuck inside this maze. Above our heads
The electric cables tangle with themselves.
Beneath our feet the rain turns streets to mud.
The boy sits by the door too bored to play
His mother cries for a life she can’t describe.
We have no home – no home but Shatila.
Spare us your good intentions, your quiet pity.
Instead, look up and raise your fist at the sky.