On Saturday, February 4th at 12:00pm PST Warwick's will host Deena Mohamed as she discusses her new graphic novel, Shubeik Lubeik, in conversation. Deena Mohamed is an Egyptian designer, illustrator, and writer. She first began making comics at eighteen, when she created the viral webcomic Qahera, a satirical superhero strip starring a visibly Muslim superheroine. Originally published in Arabic by Dar el Mahrousa in Egypt, Shubeik Lubeik was awarded Best Graphic Novel and the Grand Prize at the 2017 Cairo Comix Festival. She lives and works in Cairo, Egypt.
A brilliantly original debut graphic novel that imagines a fantastical Cairo where wishes really do come true. Deena Mohamed brings to life a cast of characters whose struggles and triumphs are heartbreaking, inspiring, and deeply resonant.
Shubeik Lubeik—an Arabic rhyme that means “your wish is my command”—is the story of three people who are navigating a world where wishes are literally for sale. Mired in bureaucracy and the familiar prejudices of our world, the wishes are more likely to work as intended the more expensive they are.
Three wishes that are sold at an unassuming kiosk in Cairo link Aziza, Nour, and Shokry, changing their perspectives as well as their lives. Aziza learned early that life can be hard, but when she loses her husband and manages to procure a wish, she finds herself fighting bureaucracy and inequality for the right to have—and make—that wish. Nour is a privileged college student who secretly struggles with depression and must decide whether or not to use their wish to try to “fix” this depression, and then figure out how to do it. And, finally, Shokry must grapple with his religious convictions as he decides how to help a friend who doesn’t want to use their wish.
Although their stories are fantastical—featuring talking donkeys, dragons, and cars that can magically avoid traffic—each of these people grapples with the very real challenge of trying to make their most deeply held desires come true.