Jaffa Prepares Morning Coffee
The events of the novel take place in the Palestinian city of Jaffa and the nearby village of Bait Dajan in the 1940s. Unlike many other novels set in this period, Jaffa Prepares Morning Coffee does not describe the flight of exiles and refugee camps but markets, Turkish baths, family outings to the shore of Lake Tiberias and late night socialising. Preparations for war and the sound of bullets flying do not dominate the atmosphere. Rather, the focus is on ordinary details and customs of daily life in the city and the country: staying up late during Ramadan, social visits paid at Christmas and wedding traditions. The characters are feudal lords and peasants, illiterate people and graduates of the best universities, Muslims, Christians and Jews. The reader meets both intellectuals and thugs, women whose life is spent in the kitchen and girls wanting to fly high. It portrays a lifestyle, long forgotten but revived from memories cherished by old men and women interviewed by the author. The sleeping Jaffa has just woken up and prepared morning coffee.