Cairo Inside Out
By Trevor Naylor. Photographs by Doriana Dimitrova
2016, AUC Press, 978-9-77416-756-0, $29.95 hb.
Reviewed by Tom Verde on September 11, 2017
This richly illustrated book lovingly explores Cairo through insiders' eyes and lenses. Naylor and Dimitrova stroll through many of Cairo's most famous neighborhoods (Zamalek, Old Cairo, Downtown) and visit monuments and locales (the Citadel, Khan al-Khalili marketplace, the Pyramids) in the locations' quieter moments, often at dawn, when life is just stirring. The perspective is inside-looking out: the Arabian Nights-inspired architecture of the "impressively renovated Mu'izz Il-Din Illah Street" shot through latticework window screens, or foot traffic outside the city's famous Anglo-Egyptian bookstore, viewed through its window displays of books. Even the Spinx and Great Pyramid share the photographic stage with the trinkets and postcards astride a gift-shop doorway that frames a view of the monuments. These carefully captured perspectives speak volumes without shouting.