In Beattie's hands, the kitsch of mass tourism wryly underlies his summary history of pharaonic Egypt and its ruins. Less sought out by sightseers are the vestiges of Cairo's Christian and Jewish communities, whose churches and synagogues Beattie describes in a lost-world tone sympathetic to their obscurity in an overwhelmingly Islamic city. He also notes that Cairo boasts some of the most impressive Islamic architecture anywhere, which he describes in fluid prose. Incorporating many writers' (e.g., Nobelist Naguib Mahfouz's) observations about Cairo, Beattie's tour is a pleasingly refined departure from the typical city guide. Gilbert TaylorCopyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved
About the Author
Andrew Beattie has traveled widely in the Arab and Islamic worlds, from Morocco to Borneo, and has written for Rough Guides and the Independent on Sunday.