Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Book Intro Tuesday - Infidel by Ayaan Hirsi Ali

Book Intro Tuesday is hosted by Diane at Bibliophile by the Sea. 
Feel free to join in with an introduction to your newest read.

I've actually been reading this book for a couple of weeks so it's not exactly 'new' but I've been so enthralled with this woman's incredible story I'm only just now coming up for air. Wow. It makes me bristle with fury at the injustice she endures and beam with admiration at what she goes on to become. I'm about half way through and looking forward to continuing.

Opening lines:

"Who are you?"
"I am Ayaan, the daughter of Hirsi, the son of Magan."
I am sitting with my grandmother on a grass mat under the talal tree.
Behind us is our house, and the branches of the talal tree are al that shields us from the sun blazing down on the white sand. "Go on," my grandmother says, glaring at me.
"And Magan was the son of Isse."
"And then?"
"Isse was the son of Muhammad. Ali. Umar." I hesitate for a moment. 
"Osman. Mahamud." I catch my breath, proud of myself.

(back cover summary)
One of today's most admired and controversial political figures, Ayaan Hirsi Ali burst into international headlines following the murder of Theo Van Gogh by an islamist who threatened that she would be next. She made headlines again when she was stripped of her citizenship and resigned from the Dutch Paarliament.
Infidel shows the coming of age of this distinguished political superstar and champion of free speech as well as the development of her beliefs, iron will, and extraordinary determination to fight injustice. Raised in a strict Muslim family, Hirsi Ali survived civil war, female mutilation, brutal beatings, adolescence as a devout believer during the rise of the Muslim Brotherhood, and life in four troubled, unstable countries ruled largely by despots. She escaped from a forced marriage and sought asylum in the Netherlands, where she earned a college degree in political science, tried to help her tragically depressed sister adjust to the West, and fought for the rights of Muslim women and the reform of Islam as a member of Parliament. Under constant threat, demonized by reactionary Islamists and politicians, disowned by her father and expelled from family and clan, she refuses to be silenced. 

What do you think? Would you keep reading? Her writing is a little stilted at first because English is like her third or fourth language, but now that I am into the flow of the story I can't get her voice out of my head. Amazing, really.


Harvee Lau said...

I have heard of this activist and am amazed by her bravery and her life. I would definitely read this book.

Creations by Laurel-Rain Snow said...

Wow, this must be a powerful story. The opener evokes so much emotion that I would definitely keep reading.


kelley jensen said...

that sounds really good. I like reading remarkable stories. kelley—the road goes ever ever on

(Diane) Bibliophile By the Sea said...

I heard that this was a really good story, so based on that and the intro, I would keep reading.

Thanks so much for joining us this week; I appreciate it.

JoAnn said...

I LOVED this book! Her story is fascinating and I highly recommend at least listening to a sample of the audiobook. It is read by the author, and her voice gives it an added sense of intimacy and immediacy.

Nise' said...

Sounds like a powerful read!

HeidiInHolland said...

I would not read this but that is due to having experienced firsthand the problems she created here in Holland. And it was so sad that she pulled others into her thoughts. I know her life was not easy but she started to create a movement here against people that still haunts our country.

Hugs from Holland ~

Trish said...

Oh dear. I'd heard there was some controversy but had no idea how serious. I'll do some research to find out more. We don't hear that much about her anymore here in North America. There was a time when she was regularly in the news, and now lately nothing. Perhaps that's the reason. Thanks for your input!

Margot said...

I'd like to read a bit more of this one. I enjoy reading about real people who have overcome tremendous odds.