Bayt Al-Qebteya (“The House of the Coptic Woman”), by Achraf El-Achmawi, Al-Dar Al-Mariah Al-Lubnaniah, 2019.
Egyptian writer and judge Achraf El-Achmawi’s new novel follows a judicial investigator tracking down clues after criminal events in a small upper Egyptian town. He faces murders with unknown motives, unusual suicide cases and arson.
The events of the novel escalate and in an atmosphere of growing paranoia the investigator himself becomes the object of suspicion.
His path crosses with a Coptic woman with a mysterious past, and the novel explores the concept of sectarianism and the relationship between religion and society.
El-Achmawi sits on the Cairo Appeals Court. He studied law at Cairo University and his first book was entitled Legitimate Robberies, and related the history of the illicit trade in Egyptian antiquities over the last 200 years.
He released first novel in 2010 under the title Zaman Al-Debaa (“The Era of Hyenas”).
His second novel, Toya, was released in 2012. It is set in Kenya and relates a love story between a British-Egyptian doctor and an African woman.
His third novel, Al-Morshid (“The Informant”), reviews Egypt's history and the societal changes in the period after the military defeat by Israel in June 1967 through to the revolution of 25 January 2011.
In 2014 he released his fourth novel The Barman, which explores the nightlife of Egypt.
The House of the Coptic Lady by: Achraf El-Achmawi