For the Wall Street Journal, Sittenfeld named "five beach reads that are devour-able without being dismissible," including:
The Yacoubian BuildingRead about the other books on the list.
Alaa Al Aswany (2006)
More than a dozen characters living in the same Cairo building fight, fall in love, sleep together and betray one another in this soap-operatic saga. A major cultural phenomenon and a controversy in the author's home country, this was the best-selling Arabic language book of 2002 and 2003.
The Yacoubian Building is one of Humphrey Davies's five top works of contemporary Egyptian fiction.