Damascus was Rafik Schami's home for twenty-five years before he sought exile in Europe, and this "Pearl of the Orient" is still the city he loves more than any other. Thirty years later, and now a prize-winning novelist, Schami has written a culinary-cultural book on his old home town. Two seemingly insurmountable barriers stood in the way of the writing of it—time and geography. So Schami's sister Marie wandered through Damascus for a year on his behalf, relaying the curiosities, sounds, personalities, tastes, and smells of the Old City while Schami wrote them down, relishing the indelible and diverse mark left on Damascene cuisine by the city's multifarious history.Rafik Schami is the critically acclaimed author of The Dark Side of Love (Interlink Books, 2009).
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