The first is a Le Carre-like spy novel, except the protagonist is a young Palestinian exile living in London, employed by the PLO. When I say Le Carre-like, I mean that it somehow manages to be exciting even though the tradecraft seldom gets fancier than paperwork. Highly recommended.
Sabra Zoo, meanwhile, is set in 1980s Beirut, and surrounds aid workers and Palestinians in the Sabra camp. Not as good as Shake Off but still a good read.
All of this exposed my ignorance of Lebanon and Palestine, and so I’ve been reading Tom Friedman’s From Beirut to Jerusalem just to catch up. I bought it in spite of my disinterest in his column. I now understand why he got the position he has today.
Suggestions for more recent reads are welcome. I prefer a mixture of readable and credible, but I will take simply credible if it I’m forced to choose.