Printed in Beirut
If you have ever labored over a work of fiction or have a special interest in turn-of-the century Lebanon or publishing in the Middle East, this novel may be your cup of tea. Even if none of the above applies, the thriller that unfolds at the fictional century-old Karam Brothers Press in the Lebanese capital will likely intrigue you. The protagonist is a would-be novelist whose handwritten manuscript has been rejected by every publisher he visits. The writer finally takes a fallback job as copy editor at the last press on his list, Karam Brothers, only to find his manuscript mysteriously vanishes from his desk. When it reappears several days later it is beautifully printed and bound in a bright red cover—work arranged by his boss’s wife. Then he discovers that his novel has been printed on paper identical to that of counterfeit 20-euro bills in circulation. Thus, the scene is set for an awkward romance, financial complications, a police investigation—and murder.