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  • Published: 1 January 2007
  • ISBN: 9780099461593
  • Imprint: Vintage
  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 512
  • RRP: $19.99

Gate of the Sun



Elias Khoury has created a monumental and spellbinding saga, putting human faces to a political tragedy at the forefront of the news even today.

In a makeshift hospital in a refugee camp on the outskirts of Beirut, Yunis, an aging Palestinian freedom fighter, lies in a coma. His spiritual son Dr Khaleel - who has no real medical qualifications - nurses the older man, refusing to admit that his hero may never regain consciousness. In an attempt to revive his patient, Khaleel, like a modern-day Sheherazade, begins telling Yunis the stories of their people's exile in Lebanon. He evokes deserted peasant villages, the suffering caused by the Lebanese civil war and the refugees' hopes to return home with a subtle mixture of anger and compassion. Khaleel also narrates Yunis' own extraordinary life: his childhood in Palestine and his commitment as a member of the fedayeen. Interweaving many true-life tales collected throughout Lebanon and its refugee camps over the course of seven years, Elias Khoury has created a monumental and spellbinding saga.

  • Published: 1 January 2007
  • ISBN: 9780099461593
  • Imprint: Vintage
  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 512
  • RRP: $19.99

About the author

Elias Khoury

Elias Khoury was born in Lebanon in 1948. Editor-in-Chief of the cultural pages of the daily newspaper Al-Nahar and professor of Arabic literature at New York University, he is the author of eleven novels. In 2000, he was awarded the most prestigious Palestinian literary prize for Gate of the Sun. Elias Khoury is regarded as one of the best Arabic writers of his generation.

Praise for Gate of the Sun

Elias Khoury spreads before us a colourful tapestry of life and death, woven with love and compassion - Claudine Besset-Lamoine, Monde Diplomatique

This is a challenging novel that demands from us an imagination potent enough to link its many loose threads...Humphrey Davies's translation is masterful, allowing us to appreciate Gate of the Sun's short, clear sentences and crisp metaphors afresh - Samir El-Youssef, New Statesman

He creates his very own, and very believable, newly coined mythologies...[t]he result is a work of remarkable suspense: one needs to know more about the central relationships, and slowly Khoury winds the reader in. The ending is both poetic and mysterious, but satisfyingly so - Nicholas Blincoe, Daily Telegraph

Brilliant ... Elias Khoury, along with Mahmoud Darwish, is an artist giving voice to rooted exiles and trapped refugees, to dissolving boundaries and changing identities, to radical demands and new languages' Edward Said

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