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Synopsis

Experience the beautifully written tale of a hapless young artist, a beat-up pick-up called Yasmine, and an extraordinary journey across the world. Misadventure in the Middle East: Travels as Tramp, Artist and Spy by Henry Hemming creates a portrait of the post-9/11 Middle East that transports the reader into the human heart of the region. When Henry Hemming sets out in his pick-up truck to make a portrait of the Middle East, he has no idea what he will find or how he will live. Using art as his passport, he spends a year traveling throughout the area; his extraordinary journey finds him accused of being both an Islamic extremist and a British spy, dancing in a dervish hideaway and attending a Fourth of July party with GIs in Saddam Hussein's Republican Palace. As the young people he meets along the way share their dreams and doubts, Hemming discovers an unpredictable Middle East that is in no way accurately represented by the nightly news. And as the invasion of Iraq intensifies, he realizes that in order to finish his portrait, he must go to Baghdad to find a fabled artistic renaissance-a trip that could cost him his life.

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