The first novel I am reading for the Naguib Mahfouz challenge is Midaq Alley. The novels centers around the lives of the inhabitants of an alley in the old city of Cairo. And yes, there is a Mexican movie based on the novel, staring Salma Hayek. It is good as well, but it is only loosely based on the novel, so it is not a substitute!
Published in 1947, it has been called one of Mahfouz’s finest works. I have read it before and I have to agree. Look for the first post later today!