From one of the foremost writers in the Arab world comes a new novel banned across much of the region--a devastating work of fiction about the Egyptian revolution, taking us inside the battle raging between those in power and those prepared to lay down their lives in the defense of freedom.

Cairo, 2011. After decades under a repressive regime, tensions are rising in the city streets. No one is out of reach of the revolution. There is General Alwany, a high-ranking member of the government's security agency, a pious man who loves his family yet won't hesitate to torture enemies of the state; Asma, a young teacher who chafes against the brazen corruption at her school; Ashraf, an out-of-work actor who is having an affair with his maid and who gets pulled into Tahrir Square through a chance encounter; Nourhan, a television personality who loyally defends those in power; and many more. As these lives collide, a new generation finds a voice, love blossoms across class divides, and the revolution gains strength. Even the general finds himself at a crossroads as his own daughter joins the protests. Yet the old regime will not give up without a fight. With an unforgettably vivid cast of characters and a heart-pounding narrative, Alaa Al Aswany gives us a deeply human portrait of the Egyptian Revolution, and an impassioned retelling of his country's turbulent recent history.
From the French press:
 
“Extraordinary storyteller Alaa Al Aswany pulls off the great novel of the Egyptian revolution . . . Wildly ambitious.”Télérama
 
“A breathtaking and suspenseful novel, built like a saga and inhabited by splendid characters whose interconnections gradually become clear, as Al Aswany does so well . . . A mosaic-portrait of a revolution, a mirror held to his fellow citizens from all walks of life, which will move readers across the whole world . . . It is a tribute to the youth who believed, a diatribe against those who put an end to their hopes, and against the authorities who tortured and killed these young defenders of freedom.”—Le Point

“A powerful book in the vein of a great Russian or South American social novel . . . Al Aswany is a writer of great talent, a rare man whose courage is not merely literary.”—Le Figaro Littéraire
 
“Alaa Al Aswany magnifies the hopes of the Egyptian people.”Livres Hebdo
 
“A novel as stunning as it is shocking.”—Lire
 
“A gripping epic.”—La Vie
 
“A powerful choral novel . . . with a rich cast of characters.”—L’Humanité Dimanche
 
“Alaa Al Aswany is today’s most important Egyptian writer, the spokesman of his people.” RFI/Littérature sans frontières 
 
“An exceptional writer . . . He is the Victor Hugo of the Nile, the Balzac of Cairo.”RTL/Laissez-vous tenter  

“It is with much emotion that we encounter the fabulous storyteller Alaa Al Aswany.”Gazelle

“One of our greatest contemporary writers or, even better, the Pharaoh of the literary arts . . . A wonderful novel . . . Breathtaking . . . The Republic of False Truths is also a novel of ferocious comedy and dissent; Al Aswany attacks the hypocrisy of power, politics, and every aspect of religion, including its relationship to sexuality.”—France Culture / Le temps des écrivains

“Al Aswany is a courageous man . . . The novel is an absolute cornucopia, magnificent.”Arte 28

“Has Aswany written the chronicle of a revolutionary blaze cut short? Or the gravestone of a moment that will inscribe itself in the history of Egypt? It is too early to tell. But not too early to relish his humor and his irreverence.”Le Monde des Livres
 
“With Alaa Al Aswany, the novel embraces history with both hands . . . In a limpid, devilishly effective style, he paints, in an abundance of detail, a breathtaking gallery of portraits.”—L’Humanité

“The great Egyptian writer gives voice to the Tahrir Square movement, to people from every layer of society . . . Al Aswany refrains from knowing history better than his characters: he accompanies them at every moment, in their lightness or their darkness, their naivety, their fragile perspicacity.”Philosophie Magazine

“A courageous and effective book . . . The novel vibrates with the dark urgency of wounded, but not entirely lost, dreams.”Transfuge

“A great novel . . . A tremendous writer.”—France Culture / Les matins