“If you liked The Kite Runner, you must read this riveting, firsthand account by one of the real Afghan mujahideen . . . An extraordinary tale” (Leslie Cockburn).
Masood Farivar was ten years old when his childhood in peaceful and prosperous Afghanistan was shattered by the Soviet invasion of 1979. Although he was born into a long line of religious and political leaders who had shaped his nation’s history for centuries, Farivar fled to Pakistan with his family and came of age in a madrassa for refugees. At eighteen, he defied his parents and returned home to join the jihad, fighting beside not only the Afghan mujahideen but also Arab and Pakistani volunteers. When the Soviets withdrew, Farivar moved to America and attended the prestigious Lawrenceville School and Harvard, and ultimately became a journalist in New York.
Farivar draws on his unique experience as a native Afghan, a former mujahideen fighter, and a longtime US resident to provide unprecedented insight into the ongoing collision between Islam and the West. This is a visceral, clear-eyed, and illuminating memoir from an indispensable new voice on the world stage.
“Like the war poets who told you what it was really like to be in the trenches, Farivar survived to tell us about life on the front lines of the clash of civilizations—and it rings with more truth than any other account of these famous events I’ve ever read. In these troubled times, this is a book that is brave, honest, humane and full of love.” —Aidan Hartley, author of The Zanzibar Chest