This is the first critical monograph on Iraqi fiction, looking at the novel's coming of age in the 1950s Catherine Cobham and Fabio Caiani look in depth at a focussed number of authors who started writing in Iraq in or around the 1950s to explore a pivotal moment in Iraqi novel writing. In these writers' work, a transition is made from fiction that was mainly concerned with political and social matters to one which, while remaining engaged with society, is formally more adventurous and technically more mature. It fills a gap in the existing research in English on modern Arabic prose literature, which has barely begun to address the work of Iraqi novelists. It focuses on Gha'ib Tu'ma Farman (1927-1990), Mahdi Isa al-Saqr (1927-2006) and Fu'ad al-Takarli (1927-2008), plus a selection of works by Mahmud Ahmad al-Sayyid, Dhu al-Nun Ayyub and Abd al-Malik Nuri. It places authors in their literary - historical and socio-political context to show how external factors shaped the fiction of the time.