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Ten years ago when I was Youssef Rakha and a revolution was breaking out in Tahrir Square, I was visited by a phantom who, in a Romance language I didn’t recognize, revealed to me the contents of this book. Without words, the phantom gave me a codified prophecy that I would not decipher until I was someone else and it was coming true… 

But make no mistake, Rakha is an original. - Zein El-Amine, The Markaz Review


It’s difficult to explain how these stories are gory and hilarious, frightening and realistic at the same time … Relatable! But also not. – Sarah Manvel, Exacting Clam

Have been loving this wild, intelligent, superrealistic, and totally moreish collection of stories from post-Spring Egypt. – Alexander Wells


EMISSARIES, Youssef Rakha's first volume of original English fiction, is a collection of revolution-juggling, PKD-, Ballard- and Burroughs-inspired short stories about the Arab Spring and its aftermath in Cairo.

Read excerpts on The London Magazine and Minor Literatures, listen to a conversation featuring Yumna Kassab, Guy Gunaratne and Alexander Booth with extracts from the audio book, and order here.


Youssef Rakha is an Egyptian novelist, poet and essayist working in both Arabic and English.

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