The Hidden Light of Objects

by Mai Al-Nakib

A young girl, renamed Amerika in honour of the US role in the liberation of Kuwait, finds her name has become a barometer of her country’s growing hostility towards the West. A self-conscious Palestinian teenager is drawn into a botched suicide bombing by two classmates. A middle-aged man dying of cancer looks back on his extramarital affairs and the abiding forgiveness of his wife.

The headlines tell of war, unrest and religious clashes. But if you look beyond them you may see another side of life in the Middle East – adolescent love, yearnings for independence, the fragility of marriage, pain of the most universal and quotidian kind.