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Tuesday, July 28, 2015

When The Moon Is Low by Nadia Hashimi - Book Review

About The Book:

Mahmoud's passion for his wife Fereiba, a schoolteacher, is greater than any love she's ever known. But their happy, middle-class world—a life of education, work, and comfort—implodes when their country is engulfed in war, and the Taliban rises to power. Mahmoud, a civil engineer, becomes a target of the new fundamentalist regime and is murdered. Forced to flee Kabul with her three children, Fereiba has one hope to survive: she must find a way to cross Europe and reach her sister's family in England. With forged papers and help from kind strangers they meet along the way, Fereiba make a dangerous crossing into Iran under cover of darkness. Exhausted and brokenhearted but undefeated, Fereiba manages to smuggle them as far as Greece. But in a busy market square, their fate takes a frightening turn when her teenage son, Saleem, becomes separated from the rest of the family. Faced with an impossible choice, Fereiba pushes on with her daughter and baby, while Saleem falls into the shadowy underground network of undocumented Afghans who haunt the streets of Europe's capitals. Across the continent Fereiba and Saleem struggle to reunite, and ultimately find a place where they can begin to reconstruct their lives.

My Thoughts:

When the world as she knows it falls apart, young Afghani mother Fereiba finds herself widowed, her children fatherless and the very real possibility of her entire family being in danger from the Taliban. She knows that she has to do whatever she can to keep her family safe, and sets out to leave their Afghanistan home and travel to England where her sister is.  It is a difficult journey and the small family meet tragedy and heartache all along the way.

I found "When The Moon Is Low" to be a fascinating but heart-wrenching story. Author Nadia Hashimi's storytelling is exquisite as she weaves the story using the voices of Fereiba and her son, Saleem. It was interesting to see the journey Fereiba's family takes through the eyes of the mother and of the son. This is a powerfully emotional story and I found myself tearing up at the most difficult situations, and cheering Fereiba's bravery as she always pushes forward for her family.

This novel is a brilliant look into the other side of Afghanistan and the people of the country who have suffered so much for so long.  I highly recommend this book to those interested in learning more about our world.

About The Author:

Nadia Hashimi is a pediatrician of Afghan descent. Both her parents left Afghanistan in the early 1970s and settled in the United States to chase the American dream. Her debut novel, The Pearl That Broke Its Shell (Harper Collins, 2014) is an international bestseller and was a 2014 Goodreads finalist in the categories of Debut Author and Fiction.

 Her second novel, When The Moon Is Low, is a story of terror, survival, perseverance and hope that chronicles one Afghan woman's odyssey to save her family and find asylum in the West.

Connect with her on Facebook, Twitter or via her website (www.nadiahashimi.com) to learn more or request a virtual book club visit.

My thanks to William Morrow for providing the review copy of this book. I was not compensated for my opinion.

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