Cover art by Andrew Skwish

People of the Book

Yussef El Guindi
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Jason returns from war to literary glory after writing an international bestseller, but his celebrity is underscored by his marriage to Madeeha, an Iraqi woman he saved. When he reunites with old friends, Amir and Lynn, questions emerge about the veracity of the book and its particular patriotic American gaze. Lust, jealousy, and personal politics bring things between old friends to a boiling point and we are asked “what is the expense of lies — personally and as a country?”

Production Info

Cast: 4 total (2 female, 2 male)
Full Length Drama (about 100 minutes)
Minimal Set Requirements
Contemporary Costumes

Press Quotes

“In [Yussef El Guindi’s] new PEOPLE OF THE BOOK … he sheds a sharp light on [the recent] war’s intimate effects on two couples whose battlefield becomes the home front … The play’s melt-down climax is truly shocking … And as with any tragedy, including a Euripidean tragedy, there are no answers — only consequences, which leave the theater with you.” —Oregon Artswatch

“You may think you know what to expect and what hot button topics [Yussef El Guindi] will hit upon. And he does. But he also manages some literary acrobatics bringing in surprise after surprise making this a deliciously complicated show with an ending that may leave you with more questions than when you came in … it’s a climax I never saw coming which made it all the more exciting … I love that a play can still surprise me like this and when one does, I need to give it its due.” —Broadway World

“Truth, infidelity, artistic jealousy, and sexual tension come together in this powerful and concise new play.” —The Stranger

“The dialogue tends to be nimble, witty and unpredictable. Reason enough to check out El Guindi’s latest play, PEOPLE OF THE BOOK.” —Crosscut

About the Author


  • Yussef El Guindi

    Born in Egypt, raised in London, and now based in Seattle, Yussef El Guindi’s work frequently examines the collision of ethnicities, cultures, and politics that face Arab-Americans and Muslim Americans. El Guindi holds an MFA in playwriting from Carnegie Mellon University and has worked as resident playwright at Silk Road Theatre Project; literary manager for Golden Thread Productions; and playwright-in-residence at Duke University. He is the recipient of many honors, including the Steinberg/ATCA New Play Award and the 2010 Middle East America Distinguished Playwright Award. El Guindi's most recent productions include THE TALENTED ONES at Artists Repertory Theatre in Portland (Santa Barbara Independent Indy Awards); THREESOME at Portland Center Stage, ACT, and at 59E59 (winner of a Portland Drammy for Best Original Script); PILGRIMS MUSA AND SHERI IN THE NEW WORLD (winner of the Steinberg/American Theater Critics Association's New Play Award in 2012; and the 2011 Gregory Award) also at ACT, and at Center Repertory Company (Walnut Creek, CA) 2013; and LANGUAGE ROOMS (Edgerton Foundation New American Play Award), co-produced by Golden Thread Productions and the Asian American Theater Company in San Francisco; at the Wilma Theater in Philadelphia (premiere), and at the Los Angeles Theater Center. Other productions: OUR ENEMIES: LIVELY SCENES OF LOVE AND COMBAT was produced by Silk Road Theater Project and won the M. Elizabeth Osborn award. His play BACK OF THE THROAT (winner of L.A. Weekly's Excellence in Playwriting Award for 2006), PILGRIMS MUSA AND SHERI IN THE NEW WORLD, JIHAD JONES AND THE KALASHNIKOV BABES, SUCH A BEAUTIFUL VOICE IS SAYEDA and KARIMA’S CITY have been published by Dramatists Play Service. TEN ACROBATS IN AN AMAZING LEAP OF FAITH, COLLABORATOR, THREESOME, and THE TALENTED ONES have been published by Broadway Play Publishing Inc. OUR ENEMIES: LIVELY SCENES OF LOVE AND COMBAT is published in the anthology FOUR ARAB AMERICAN PLAYS published by McFarland Books. In January 2019, Bloomsbury will publish SELECTED WORKS BY YUSSEF EL GUINDI. Currently a Core Company playwright member at ACT in Seattle, 2018.

About the Book

Book Information

Publisher BPPI
Publication Date 12/4/2023
Pages 86
ISBN 9780881459913

Special Notes

Special Notes

Licensees are required to include the original stage producers credits in the following form on the title page in all programs distributed in connection with performances of the Play and in all advertising in which the full cast appears in size of type not less than ten percent (10%) of the size of the title of the Play:
The following must appear within all programs distributed in connection with performances of the Play:
People of the Book is produced
by special arrangement with Broadway Play Publishing Inc, NYC