Death in Gaza
A Palestinian Thriller

Matt Beynon Rees

€ 17, 00
Publisher: Cairo Editore
Pages: 316
ISBN/EAN: 9788860521514

Omar Yussef has become principal of the UN school near Bethlehem where he has always taught history. He took over from his boss who was killed by a bomb. Now, together with other UN officials he has to inspect the schools in that God-forgotten land called Gaza.

But as soon as they arrive in the town, the inspectors are greeted with the news that one of their teachers has been arrested with the incredible accusation of spying for the CIA. The man is not to be found, and they fear for his safety. And while Omar Yussef takes on the responsibility to understand what’s going on, his Swedish colleague, Magnus Wallender, is kidnapped right under the eyes of a group of militiamen. According to Omar’s old friend, the policeman Zhamis Zeydan, there are no single, isolated crimes in Gaza, they are all linked together. Maybe he’s right: now two people must be saved, but there might be just one trail to follow.

Then there’s the frightening sandstorm that suffocates the Strip, inflames spirits and obfuscates everything, including the intricate network of connections between corrupt politicians, police torturers, militiamen and arms smugglers. All of them championing the Palestinians … at least until it’s necessary to sacrifice them. Far from his native Bethlehem, Omar Yussef is suffocating in the air thick with dust and hypocrisy; he runs the risk of being fatally overwhelmed bu the ferocity that pervades the strip of territory with its thousand factions always at war with each other, where not even the dead can rest in peace.

After revealing the crimes of the militia in his first investigation, Omar stubbornly pursues the truth again, resolved neither to surrender to the Westerners cynicism nor the gloomy resignation of his people. He is torn between the desire to return to the smells and flavours of family tranquillity and to dive into the guts of Gaza to bring its mysteries to light. Without ever forgetting that «he who has a thousand friends has none and he who has a single enemy will meet him everywhere».

Until the storm plays itself out and a pale sun shines again on Gaza.

The author
Matt Beynon Rees, born in Wales in 1967, is a reporter who has covered the Middle East for more than ten years. He is the author of Cain’s Field. Faith, Fratricide, and Fear in the Middle East, and is foreign correspondent for Time in Jerusalem.

In 2007 Cairo Editore published his book, The Collaborator of Bethlehem (chosen for the prestigious Quill Award in the mystery category; Guardian book of the year), translated in 17 countries. It is the first in book in his Palestinian saga with protagonist and accidental detective, Omar Yussef.

Rees lives in Jerusalem; his site is

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