From Publishers Weekly
Starred Review. "Unique," a word avoided by most journalists, is just the first to describe this heart-stopping memoir, written by a native Darfuri translator who, after escaping the massacre of his village by the genocidal Janjaweed, returned to work with reporters and UN investigators in the riskiest of situations. Taking readers far from their comfort zones, Hari charts the horrific landscape of genocide in the stories of refugee camp survivors: "It is interesting how many ways there are for people to be hurt and killed, and for villages to be terrorized and burned... I would say that these ways to die and suffer are unspeakable, and yet they were spoken: we interviewed 1,134 human beings over the next weeks." Danger is rampant, especially at border crossings, and the effect on outsiders is profound: "Some of the BBC people had to return to Chad, where they were in a medical clinic for three days to recover from what they saw, and smelled, and learned." Homey facts about the loyalty of camels, the pecking order in villages and vast family networks bring respite from more dire tales, including Hari's long, multi-site imprisonment with a U.S. journalist and their Chadian driver. The captives' endurance through uncertainty and torture is unbelievable, and their eventual rescue reads like James Bond by way of boldface politicos like recent presidential contender Bill Richardson. Throughout, Hari demonstrates almost incomprehensible decency; those with the courage to join Hari's odyssey may find this a life-changing read. A helpful appendix provides a primer on the Darfur situation.
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“Pure, candid and deeply moving.”–New York Post
] may be the biggest small book of this year, or any year. In roughly two hundred pages of simple, lucid prose, it lays open the Darfur genocide more intimately and powerfully than do a dozen books by journalists or academic experts.”–The Washington Post Book World
“A book of unusually humane power and astounding moral clarity.”–Kirkus Reviews
“This is a book every American should read. . . . In the spirit of courage and a desire to protect his people, [Hari] has written an emotional yet gentle memoir.”–Deseret Morning News
“Heart-stopping . . . a life-changing read.”–Publishers Weekly