Syria in the past few years has generated enough stories for several lifetimes.
Emily Robbins knows the country and wanted to tell a story of her own, one that got beyond the daily recitations of bombings and casualties in the civil war there. So she wrote a novel, A Word for Love.
It is set in Syria as the body politic begins to come unglued, and concerns an American woman studying Arabic. So yes, there are some autobiographical details from Robbins' own life.