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Haya Shawwa

Based in San Francisco, Haya Shawwa - a writer and artist - is recognized for being a torchbearer of Arab high culture in the Bay Area. Haya studied various fine arts, including fashion and jewelry design, at CCA, SFI and UC Berkeley. She co-founded Zawaya with Nabila Mango in 2003, an NGO that helps promote Arab arts and culture in the Bay Area. She has also been an artistic advisor for San Francisco's Presidio Dance Theater since 2004.

"I have had the honour of translating this memorable book into Arabic for Rimal Books. Niki Marangou, a poet, writer and painter whisks you away and takes you on a journey of an ambitious young Cypriot man in early 20th century pursuing his dreams through a period of turbulent wartime Europe, the height of the monarchy in Alexandria and the awakening of Cyprus. Her narration is witty, vibrant and passionate. It leaves you filled with an array of emotions that linger in your heart and mind. You yearn to be there, to live those intriguing times, and meet the remarkable characters." - Haya Shawwa