Tinder has acquired These Bodies of Water: Navigating Britain's Imprint on the Middle East by Sabrina Mahfouz, a "powerful meditation" on the influence of the British Empire.
Assistant editor Amy Perkins pre-empted UK and Commonwealth rights from Becky Thomas at Johnson & Alcock. The book is set to be a lead non-fiction title on the Tinder Press list in spring 2022.
These Bodies of Water is inspired by Mahfouz’s show at the Royal Court, "A History of Water in the Middle East" (2019). Mahfouz will intertwine history and her own personal experience of growing up as a woman of Middle Eastern heritage in modern-day Britain to explore the influence of the British Empire in the Middle East. She will also explore other women's stories from the region.
Perkins said: "I have long been an admirer of Sabrina’s, and the opportunity to bring her to the list with a project as exciting as this is a dream come true. Sabrina is one of those rare artists with the ability to express themselves on paper as thrillingly as they do in person. The artful way she balances the personal and political in her prose is startling, and I can’t wait for a new audience to discover her brilliance in 2022."
Mahfouz commented: "I have held these stories inside for a lifetime. Releasing a fraction of them for my theatre show illuminated how much I wanted to expand on writing about Britain’s role historically and currently in the Middle East, the Middle East’s influence on modern-day Britain and ultimately, what all this means to someone from both places, like me. Threading these stories through with the flow of the region’s water makes the writing of this book feel even more urgent, as we are more aware than ever of water being our most precious resource."
Mahfouz has written several plays as well as a poetry collection How You Might Know Me (Outspoken Press, 2016). She also contributed to The Good Immigrant (Unbound, 2016).