Qarmont forces the readers gaze onto Gaza, a city which feels suffocated, hemmed in by the various states which surround it, where its citizens attempt to live their lives in a world which has long considered both Gaza an its people as being dispensable. So ‘Black Grapes’ explores how a simply misunderstanding soon escalated into violence as the anger of a Palestinian man over not being paid his salary is transformed into an act of terrorism, so the chance encounter between two young men where one of them is buying flowers for Mother’s Day is revisited ten years later as the one of them assassinates the other via a drone. The stories focus on how arbitrary the things which divide us, whether it be politics, race or religion are and how, if we look deeply enough, the things which unite us run far deeper.

Yet this collection of stories aren’t solely political; many of them, such as ‘The Long Braid’ explore the frustrations of a young singer in the grip of a parochial society, or the far more whimsical ‘The Sea Cloak’, where a young girl just wants to sink into the soft, endless embrace of the sea, free from the worries of school and her family life.