Ian Bassingthwaighte

reads from

Live from Cairo:
A Novel

in conversation with ANDREW KRIVÁK

This event includes a book signing

Date

Jul
27
Thursday
July 27, 2017
7:00 PM

Location

Harvard Book Store
1256 Massachusetts Ave., Cambridge, MA 02138

Tickets

This event is free; no tickets are required.

Harvard Book Store and GrubStreet welcome award-winning writer IAN BASSINGTHWAIGHTE and The Signal Flame author ANDREW KRIVÁK for a discussion of Bassingthwaighte's debut novel, Live from Cairo.

About Live from Cairo

From a hugely talented, award-winning young author, a brilliant, lively debut novel about an impulsive American attorney, a methodical Egyptian translator, and a disillusioned Iraqi-American resettlement officer trying to protect a refugee who finds herself trapped in Cairo during the turbulent aftermath of the January 25 revolution.

Cairo, 2011. President Mubarak has just been ousted from power. The oldest city in the world is reeling from political revolution, its consequent hopes and fears, its violence, triumphs, and defeats. But for the people actually living there, daily life has not slowed down but become wilder, more dangerous, and, occasionally, freeing.

Live from Cairo is the exuberant, dazzling story of these people: Dalia, a strong-willed Iraqi refugee who finds herself trapped in Egypt after her petition to resettle in America with her husband is denied. Charlie, her foolhardy attorney, whose frustration with the legal bureaucracy and complicated feelings for Dalia have led him to forge a not entirely legal plan to get her out. Aos, Charlie’s fastidious translator and only friend, who spends his days trying to help people through the system and his nights in Tahrir Square protesting against it. And Hana, a young and disenchanted Iraqi-American resettlement officer; she is the worker assigned to Dalia’s case, deciding whether to treat her plight as merely one more piece of paperwork, or as a full-blooded human crisis. As these individuals come together, a plot is formed to help Dalia. But soon laws are broken, friendships and marriages are tested, and lives are risked—all in an effort to protect one person from the dangerous sweep of an unjust world.

A vibrant portrait of a city in all its teeming chaos and glory, Live from Cairo is an exhilarating, electrifying debut, and a stunning testament to the unconquerable desire of people to rise above tragedy to seek love, friendship, humor, and joy.

Praise

"A moving—and startlingly funny—novel about the global refugee crisis and all of the people caught up in a bureaucracy of human suffering. Bassingthwaighte finds the tragedy and absurdity in trying to be humane within an inhumane system. An ambitious debut from an exciting new voice." —Brit Bennett, New York Times–bestselling author of The Mothers

"My favorite thing about this book is the focus on love—love for country, for self, for mothers, for brothers, for each other. That at the heart of this novel is the deep, aching love between an Arab woman and an Arab man gives me goosebumps. We need this book. We need it on every shelf." —Randa Jarrar, Arab-American Book Award-winning author of A Map of Home

"Live from Cairo is a powerful novel about human lives running up against inhuman systems: an impotent bureaucracy, a corrupt government, a brutal military. It’s a story of triumphant love and heartbreaking injustice, a story about how difficult the world makes it for any one person to do the right thing. Ian Bassingthwaighte has written an important and necessary book." —Nathan Hill, New York Times–bestselling author of The Nix

Andrew Krivák
Andrew Krivák

Andrew Krivák

Andrew Krivák is the author of the award-winning novel The Sojourn, which was a finalist for the National Book Award, and received the Dayton Literary Peace Prize for fiction and the inaugural Chautauqua Prize. He lives in Somerville, Massachusetts with his wife and three children.

Photo credit: Dario Prager

Ian Bassingthwaighte
Ian Bassingthwaighte

Ian Bassingthwaighte

Ian Bassingthwaigthe was a Fulbright Scholar in Egypt in 2009, where he worked in a legal aid office for Iraqi and Sudanese refugees. Has been honored with a Hopwood Award for Fiction and as a finalist for the Daniel Pearl Investigative Journalism Initiative. His work has appeared in Esquire, National Geographic, The Chicago Tribune, The Sun, Tin House, The Rumpus, and many other publications. 

Harvard Book Store
1256 Massachusetts Ave., Cambridge, MA 02138

Walking from the Harvard Square T station: 2 minutes

As you exit the station, reverse your direction and walk east along Mass. Ave. in front of the Cambridge Savings Bank. Cross Dunster St. and proceed along Mass. Ave for three more blocks. You will pass Au Bon Pain, JP Licks, and TD Bank. Harvard Book Store is located at the corner of Mass. Ave. and Plympton St.

Unable to attend a Harvard Book Store author event? You can still pre-order a signed book by one of our visiting authors.

While we can't guarantee fulfillment of a signed book pre-order, our authors are almost always able to sign extra books to fulfill such orders.

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FAQ:

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Event Series: New Voices in Fiction

Harvard Book Store's New Voices in Fiction series, presented with GrubStreet, highlights debut novelists discussing their work and the writing process.

GrubStreet is one of the nation's leading creative writing centers, offering 500+ classes a year in all genres, for writers of all levels. We believe that narrative transforms lives, builds bridges, and produces empathy. By rigorously developing voices of every type and talent and by removing barriers to entry, GrubStreet fosters the creation of meaningful stories and ensures that excellent writing remains vital and relevant. To learn more or find a class, visit grubstreet.org.

Purchase the Book
Featured event books will be for sale at the event for 20% off. Thank you for supporting this author series with your purchases.
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info@harvard.com

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