BOOK FOR OUR TIMES: As a Muslim refugee who is making a successful life in America, Abdi is a shining example of what America means to so many people around the world and a reminder of why we need to be cognizant of our role in the international community.
ABDI THE SPOKESMAN: Abdi has been invited to the UN multiple times to speak about refugee and immigration issues. He currently works as an interpreter helping Somali immigrants make the transition to a very different life in Maine.
RADIO EXPOSURE: Abdi’s story of getting his visa was featured on This American Life and got a tremendous response. Ira Glass and his crew are huge fans of Abdi and have rebroadcasted the episode, and they are game to help promote.
ABDI HIMSELF: Abdi is an experienced radio journalist and is hugely charismatic, and will be a great asset to publicizing the book. His story is full of horrifyingly brutal experiences during the war and under the Islamists, but his spirit is unbreakable and he is truly an inspirational figure.
AUDIENCE: This is a perfect book for anyone who read A Long Way Gone, Outcasts United, The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind, and Enrique’s Journey—or novels like What Is the What, Exit West, The Refugees, and Little Bee.
“Iftin’s account of his journey does not mince words or attempt to soften the worst atrocities he and his family experienced. Loyal and grateful to his mother, he shows particular sensitivity to the injustices suffered by women in Somalia. Told simply and well, Iftin’s story explains the incredible bravery and hope necessary to live in the crosshairs of war and to find a way out.”
—Jane Constantineau, The New York Journal of Books
“Riveting…[Abdi Nor Iftin] had to endure famine, war, a precarious life as a refugee, and a visa-rejecting bureaucracy before a green-card lottery win, in 2014, enabled him to emigrate. His narrative is both panoramic and particular, full of irreverent asides, and suffused with appreciation for the humanity of others.”
—The New Yorker
“Absolutely remarkable and always as compelling as a novel… An essential immigrant story, one that is enlightening and immediate.”
—Booklist (Starred Review)
“[A] wrenching yet hopeful autobiography… Iftin’s extraordinary saga is not just a journey of self-advancement but a quest to break free from ethnic and sectarian hatreds.”
—Publishers Weekly (Starred Review)
“A searing memoir…that impressively remains upbeat, highly inspiring, and always educational.”
—Kirkus (Starred Review)
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