A riotous love letter to Arab culture—its sense of honor and friendship, its food and humor and, above all, storytelling. In this exuberant, transformative tale of modern-day Cairo, a drunken Irish journalist named Fin seeks a story. His friend Farouk, mercurial teller of tales, has tantalized him with news of the wily Skinhead Said, who may or may not have discovered a cache of priceless antiquities. But the truth remains elusive—not until they both travel to proverbial hell and back, courtesy of a thuggish kebab-shop tycoon and his brutal retinue. Once Fin finds a way to save his friend's life, and baba ghanoush is properly made, and other necessities of life are observed, then stories may be spun and secrets reluctantly revealed.With Irish wit and passion, Rowan Somerville crafts a novel full of earthy humor, sensual pleasure, spiritual yearning, and delayed satisfaction—a Pilgrim's Progress of a modern, Western soul, seeking (and finding) itself in a foreign land.