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Baghdad Burning II: More Girl Blog from Iraq (Women Writing the Middle East) Paperback – September 1, 2006

ISBN-13: 978-1558615298 ISBN-10: 1558615296

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Product Details

  • Series: Women Writing the Middle East
  • Paperback: 240 pages
  • Publisher: The Feminist Press at CUNY (September 1, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1558615296
  • ISBN-13: 978-1558615298
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.6 x 8.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 9.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #462,618 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

The distinctive voice of pseudonymous Riverbend shines through this continuation of her blog, from October 2004 through March 2006 (2005's Baghdad Burning won a Lettre Ulysses Award for the Art of Literary Reportage). Now 27, she offers an invaluable description of life in a middle-class, secular, mixed Shia-Sunni family. Alternating reports of attacks seen on TV and raids in her neighborhood with the mundane details of fuel shortages and infrequent electricity and water, Riverbend also offers astute analysis of the Iraqi draft constitution and American media, widely available through Iraqi TV and the Internet (her suggestion for a reality show: "Take 15 Bush supporters and throw them in a house in Fallujah"). She emphasizes how gender has become an issue when it never was before, e.g., election forms are all stamped "male." Riverbend's dry wit leavens her anger: after watching the 2006 Oscar ceremonies on TV, she proposes Iraqi Oscars ("Ahmed Al-Chalabi in 'Disappearing Act' for his magnificent evaporation from the Iraqi political scene"). Throughout, the blog insists that most Iraqis are tolerant; prefer secular to religious government; fear civil war; and vehemently want the occupation to end. (Riverbend's blog continues at riverbendblog.blogspot.com.) (Nov.)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

From Booklist

Riverbend has chronicled the U.S. occupation of Baghdad since July 2003. The first collection of her blog posts, Baghdad Burning: Girl Blog from Iraq (2005), was an intriguing, wide-ranging document, exploring both the mundanities of daily deprivation and the complexities of Iraq's political predicament. In this update, chaos has become the routine, and Riverbend's good humor is almost exhausted. She reports growing repression by Fundamentalist Muslims and predicts the impending death of Iraq's secular society. Worse than the fear of public chastisement is the fear of violence from Iraq's security forces, which she claims now act as religious and political militias. Simmering with righteous anger, she writes of nighttime raids, of dead friends, of shortages of water, power, and food. And news accounts--and Riverbend's own blog--tell us that violence in Baghdad has become even worse since the book went to press. Riverbend's opinions may be off-putting to supporters of the war, but her experiences transcend politics. This invaluable account should be read by all voting-age Americans. Keir Graff
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved

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Customer Reviews

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I also wish most people could read both of her books.
Gramma of Three
I actually bought these books for a couple of friends, but I have read the original blogs online since the beginning of the Iraq war.
C. DEPAULO
It is a very intense book and the reader cannot help but get caught up in the daily struggle in a hellish world.
S. Rowland

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

14 of 16 people found the following review helpful By A. D. McCreery on February 17, 2007
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is a journal by a twenty something educated Baghdad woman writen almost daily from the time of the invasion and a picture of what has happened to her city and her family and how they cope - the lack of electricity, water and safety, the constant explosions and the troops breaking into homes and the loss of women's freedoms. She started out (See Baghdad Burning I) being encouraged but the horror of the last years has changed her outlook. She tells of women now having to be scarfed, wear long dresses and not drive and being terrorized by the fanatics and the military and police.

Emotionally, It is hard to read in great gulps but for a full understanding of what is happening to the daily lives of people of Baghdad I highly recommend it.
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13 of 15 people found the following review helpful By Robert Blake on April 9, 2007
Format: Paperback
The collections of blogs written by the Iraqi woman only known as "Riverbend" in what has become the "Baghdad Burning" series, is the best source of information to read to know about how the actual Iraqis are living and dying in the occupied country. More than "The Assassin's Gate" or "Fiasco," "Baghdad Burning" and "Baghdad Burning II" tell the truth about the Bush junta's imperialist war in Iraq and how it has affected the lives of its inhabitants. With grace and fine detail we learn about the loss of basic resources like water and electricity, the fear Iraqis live under with the threat of militia violence and U.S. commando raids on their homes. We get here a portrait of a nation descending into civil war as an occupying foreign force only makes things worse. Conservative pundits and pro-war screamers should read the sections where Riverbend begs the American people not to re-elect George Bush and where she describes the carnage and outright war crimes that took place with the destruction of Fallujah. What will be striking to many is how easily one can put his or herself in Riverbend's shoes as she describes her battles with the internet and her TV-viewing habits. It is poignant to read an Iraqi attacking Fox News for it's obvious distortion of the facts, of course Bill O'Reilly and Sean Hannity will claim they know more about what's best for Iraq than the actual IRAQIS. "Baghdad Burning II" is even more heartbreaking than the first volume because here the nation has descended into the deep abyss in which we are still mired, the terror has arrived in full spectrum and now the streets are truly not safe, the invaders and guerrillas roam the streets and sons and daughters are being slaughtered.Read more ›
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Angela Jackson-Brown on August 10, 2007
Format: Paperback
That anyone could read this woman's sensitive, heartfelt assessment of what is happening to her country and not be touched by it, is just another example of how this country is continuing to digress instead of make positive progress. How many people have to die in this mindless, spindless war before we all wake up and demand that our government pull our soldiers out and make some attempt to salvage the damage we have done to our reputation and the state of this country.

We have not improved the conditions in Iraq, Riverbend's blog is evidence of that. We have not found the "supposed" Weapons of Mass Destruction. And we have not made Iraq a safer Iraq by killing Saddam. For all of the atrocities Saddam did in his lifetime, we have sadly, put our men and women of the Arms Services in a no-win position so that they too are being forced by their government to cause more chaos than peace.

They should never have been sent over there in the first place, and the fact that we as citizens have buried our heads in the sand and allowed ourselves to easily become sidetracked by stupid, ignorant "news" stories (who cares if Brittany, Nicole or Paris self-distruct?!?)instead of asking, "Why won't our government allow us to see the Baghdad that Riverbend discusses in her blog?" Or "Why is the war being sanitized to the point that our dead are reduced to numbers instead of names?" Or bigger why, "Why is Bush and his cronies being allowed full reign to do whatever they want and no one is investigating them or demanding some type of hearings?"

I mean, we were forced to sit through hours after hours of hearings about Clinton's sexual behavior in the White House. One would think that thousands dead on Bush's watch would be worth some type of investigation.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful By C. DEPAULO on May 7, 2007
Format: Paperback
I actually bought these books for a couple of friends, but I have read the original blogs online since the beginning of the Iraq war. The author, a young woman with a good job in the computer field loses her job after the war starts and begins a blog about the daily life and politics of Iraq. Written nder the ghost name of "Riverbend", it is a fascinating insight into what it's REALLY like to live in Baghdad during this period of war and unrest. She is extremely articulate, witty and has a great sarcastic sense of humor. She evokes laughter at times, but mostly sadness, anger and frustration as the situation continues to deteriorate. As I read her blogs, I found myself always anxious to read the next one. The first-hand account insight you will get is invaluable in understanding the greater impact on the REAL people who are living through this nightmare that was forced upon them. Her writings have won several awards, and having read many blogs from Iraq, I believe hers is the best. Those who I bought the book for said they were engaged from the start and couldn't put it down. It is a fast read, but you will have to visit her website to see how the story continues. I urge everyone to read her books, especially if you want to know what it's REALLY like living in a war zone from an intelligent Iraqi perspective.
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