> Skip to content
  • Published: 15 May 2010
  • ISBN: 9780307473530
  • Imprint: Knopf US
  • Format: Trade Paperback
  • Pages: 256
  • RRP: $24.99

Cairo Modern



In Naguib Mahfouz's suspenseful novel a bitter and ambitious nihilist, a beautiful and impoverished student, and a corrupt official engage in a doomed ménage à trois.

Cairo of the 1930s is a place of vast social and economic inequities. It is also a time of change, when the universities have just opened to women and heady new philosophies imported from Europe are stirring up debates among the young. Mahgub is a fiercely proud student who is determined to keep both his poverty and his lack of principles secret from his idealistic friends. When he finds that there are no jobs for those without connections, out of desperation he agrees to participate in an elaborate deception. But what begins as a mere strategy for survival soon becomes much more for both Mahgub and his partner in crime, an equally desperate young woman named Ihsan. As they make their way through Cairo's lavish high society their precarious charade begins to unravel and the terrible price of Mahgub's Faustian bargain becomes clear.

  • Published: 15 May 2010
  • ISBN: 9780307473530
  • Imprint: Knopf US
  • Format: Trade Paperback
  • Pages: 256
  • RRP: $24.99

About the author

Naguib Mahfouz

Naguib Mahfouz was an Egyptian author who won the Nobel Prize for Literature for his writing. He is probably best known for his acclaimed 'Cairo Trilogy'. Comprising three novels - Palace Walk, Palace of Desire and Sugar Street - it explores three generations of one Cairene family between 1917 and 1953.

Also by Naguib Mahfouz

See all

Related titles