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Craig Hawes

The Witch Doctor of Umm Suqeim

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  • Regular price £7.99

In the Arabian Gulf emirate of Dubai, the lives of locals and expatriates intertwine and collide as they strive to negotiate the shifting mores of an ever changing city.
'This is how we need to assess culture clash and, indeed, general confrontation born from intractable socio-political differences; with cool, clear, precise and prismatic prose. Hawes does exactly this with tremendous skill and sensitivity'.
Niall Griffiths
'Hawes' collection of short stories are a superb snapshot of the expat experience, devoid of cliche and dripping with pathos and humour and fear and scandal and hope'.
James Montague
A young male journalist puts himself at risk when he dares to defy local custom by giving an Emirati female colleague a ride back to the office, to the envy of a bitter office rival; a lavish mansion party in full swing is suddenly interrupted by a muezzin’s call to prayer, the revellers remembering for a brief moment where they are in the world; a young Filipino gym instructor has to tread carefully when he reluctantly takes on a feisty new client; a Pakistani Taxi Driver fails to wake a female passenger from her drunken stupor and takes her to his favourite cafe across the city so as not to miss an important cricket match; a young Welsh-born Dubai-bred child fears returning to a country he no longer remembers; and a British middle-aged couple with an illicit hobby pick up a taciturn Arab man in the desert when his helicopter mysteriously crash-lands. 

‘The prose is purposeful, delicate where necessary’.
Rachel Billington 
‘A writer who is clearly an exquisite stylist, with copious and choice vocabulary and a succinct restraint of manner’.
Stevie Davies 
'Entertaining from line 1 page 1, Hawes outlines the difficulties, contradictions and hypocrisies that are part of daily life for the ex pats of the arabian world'.
Plastik Magazine
Craig Hawes grew up in Briton Ferry, South Wales. He has worked as a journalist in London and Dubai, where he currently lives. He was shortlisted for the Bristol Short Story Prize 2009, Runner-up in the Rhys Davies Prize 2010, and placed third in the Yeovil Short Story Prize, 2010. Hawes' short stories have appeared in several publications and prize-winning anthologies including Blue Tattoo, Bristol Prize Anthology in 2009. He has also had stories and an afternoon play broadcast on BBC Radio 4. As a journalist Hawes has had work published by the London Evening Standard, Sunday Times Style, Big Issue, Time Out Dubai and many others.