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Enter Ghost

A novel by

2024 Encore Award
2024 Gordon Bowker Volcano Prize (shortlist)
2024 Women's Prize For Fiction (nominee)

A young woman reeling from a disastrous love affair finds love and hope in Shakespeare and Palestine

'A moving and important novel' Namwali Serpell, author of The Old Drift

After years away from her family's homeland, and reeling from a disastrous love affair, actress Sonia Nasir returns to Haifa to visit her older sister Haneen. While Haneen made a life here commuting to Tel Aviv to teach at the university, Sonia remained in London to focus on her acting career and now dissolute marriage. On her return, she finds her relationship to Palestine is fragile, both bone-deep and new.

When Sonia meets the charismatic and candid Mariam, a local director, she joins a production of
Hamlet in the West Bank. Soon, Sonia is rehearsing Gertrude's lines in classical Arabic with a dedicated group of men who, in spite of competing egos and priorities, all want to bring Shakespeare to that side of the wall. As opening night draws closer and the warring intensifies, it becomes clear just how many obstacles stand before the troupe. Amidst it all, the life Sonia once knew starts to give way to the daunting, exhilarating possibility of finding a new self in her ancestral home.

Timely, thoughtful, and passionate, Isabella Hammad's highly anticipated second novel is an exquisite story of the connection to be found in family and shared resistance.

'Beautifully written, poignant yet forceful, thoughtful and thought provoking' Azar Nafisi, author of Reading Lolita in Tehran

Genre: Literary Fiction

Praise for this book

"Outstanding. Next-level. Aesthetically, intellectually, emotionally and culturally satisfying. It is astonishing but true that Isabella Hammad is incapable of striking a false note. She immerses her heroine in volatile territory with the accuracy, compassion and coolness of a surgical knife sliding into a diseased body. The result is a stunning beauty - an eye-opening, uplifting novel that grants its vulnerable cast and their endeavors a rare and graceful dignity." - Leila Aboulela

"Enter Ghost is a masterful, deeply convincing portrait of the all-too-real consequences of political theater - in both senses. A moving and important novel that presses upon the urgent question of how we ought to live in the midst of the rubble (and ongoing chaos) of political crisis." - Namwali Serpell

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