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The Last Moderate Muslim [Kindle Edition]

Sam Wazan , Ralph Voltz
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (89 customer reviews)

Print List Price: $18.95
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Book Description

"The only saving I need is from those who are trying very hard to be saved." Sam Wazan

"More than educational, your book is a primer of human awareness that circulates in the midst of the chaos of violence. Thank you for sharing a much bigger and more profound insight with the rest of us.”-- Bishop William Swing, Episcopal Bishop of California 1980 - 2006 & President and Founder of United Religions Initiative.

"An apt comparison to The Kite Runner . ... a page burner of a story." Robert R. Baumgarte, Former Professor of Psychology at Winthrop University.

“Author Sam Wazan is a uniquely qualified tour guide.His experiences...serve as the foundation for his provocative and powerful new novel, The Last Moderate Muslim.” Charlotte View.

This is the riveting story of young Ziad, a young man forced to grow up in the middle of Lebanon’s civil war and the sole survivor of a terrible massacre. Ziad vows revenge against the perpetrators but when a vigilante orders him to shoot, he cannot. His younger brother pulls the trigger instead and becomes a hero, rising through the ranks of the local militias while exploiting Ziad’s change of heart. Ziad falls in love with Sophia, a Westernized college student. But the self-appointed sharia enforcers drag him and his girlfriend from his car and chop off their hair. As West Beirut devolves into hell, Sophia’s family emigrates to America. Ziad vows to follow his girlfriend, but will the American gatekeepers admit him, or is he doomed to a life of chronic despair?

The Last Moderate Muslim is a gripping and inspiring story about how to assert yourself and break through centuries of familial, religious, and cultural constructs. It’s about finding a positive way forward.

Editorial Reviews

From the Author

Read with Open Minds
Connect with Compassionate Hearts
Act for a Peaceful World

From the Back Cover

"A powerful and provocative novel. The book is full of authentic cultural details and tough unsparing insights. It's also full of compassion and humanity, ultimately suggesting a way out of the seemingly endless cycle of violence." --Jeff Jackson, author of Mira Corpora.

Product Details

  • File Size: 1492 KB
  • Print Length: 367 pages
  • Publisher: Stripling & Zane, Inc.; Second Edition edition (December 11, 2013)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B006LN8JJE
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #646,006 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Two Muslim Brothers February 17, 2012
Although the official description makes the book sound like it is about a romantic story about a male and female who try to overcome certain religious and political hurdles, the essence of the story is about two brothers brought up in the same family and how their journies takes them in two separate directions. Wazan gives an insight into family expecations and how religion, family mores, position and power play an important role in every decision made.

I realized how ignorant I am about the history between Christian and Muslim groups. For those of us unfamiliar with this period in history, it is eye opening. The author does a good job of staying centered in his descriptions of real life events, not trying to sway or even portray a political agenda. It compells the reader to decide where to go from here - read more and learn the history and culture or remain ignorant of these issues. The book may be used in an educational setting to set the stage for dialogue about issues that are difficult to sort through.

The novel is intense at times and there are many characters to sort through. There is a list of characters and even a glossary to help readers along the way.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A great read, and a call to action December 3, 2012
I met Sam and listened to him describe his journey in writing this book and his decision to tell his story in novel form. After reading this I think it was a very powerful and enlightened decision. There are times in history when fiction allows one to draw clearer lines, and make a presentation that talks to the emotional as well as the logical side of the brain. I believe this is true of many great novels, and it is true of The Last Moderate Muslim. This novel really draws out the cultural conflicts that are deeply rooted and not addressed by our current infatuation with poltical correctness. There are many talking heads out there that make a living out of the superficial differences between East and West, but never expose the real issues. You can paper over all the superficial differences, and still not improve the situation in the Middle East. A huge value of this novel is that it gives you a very strong bar against which to measure progress and policies as it relates to the area. This novel provides a way forward.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Great Story July 11, 2012
The Last Moderate Muslim was an incredibly compelling story that details the life of a young boy growing up in the middle of Lebanon's civil war. The author has written a story that not only gives you insight to the violence and religious extremism that fueled the war but also helps you understand how a boy growing up in the middle of such a violence could find the drive and will to escape his surroundings. I applaud the author for writing a book that not only enlightened me to the complexities of the Middle East but kept me engaged from start to finish.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Engrossing November 10, 2013
How do we break down our own walls that have been built on the framework of centuries of hatred and mistrust? The battleground:The psyche of the middle east ,where the protagonist Ziad makes his stand after being forged in the fire of death and despair.You will feel his pain, and wonder how these unthinkable scenarios play out all over the planet and what we as individuals can do about it. Wazan is a seeker who examines and poses age old questions of intolerance and inhumanity through the eyes of youth, ultimately presenting confirmation that solutions involve personal choice and risk taking on a whole new level of human endurance. The nature vs nurture debate that suggests that either peer groups or random environmental factors (i.e., those that are independent of family upbringing) are more important than family environmental effects is viewed through the lens of this story as well and is serious food for thought if we are to transcend our vicious circle of circumstances.In this book, one becomes highly aware of the depth of tragic historical paths that keep repeating themselves with only a glimmer of hope that flickers in the face of adversity and horrible brutality.It is a riveting story that weaves a textured fabric of realities that are supremely educational and enlightening for us all.I read the book in one sitting as it had me in its grip and plundered my emotions thoroughly.There is a light ignited and taken away from this read that surely will be passed.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars An Engrossing Story with a Message April 17, 2012
The Last Moderate Muslim is an authentic and engrossing story with a message and as such it is well worth reading. At its core the book is an indictment of war and the rationales we hide behind to justify our barbarous treatment of other people. The book is even handed in its condemnation of incivility no matter the source. It paints a picture of how war contaminates and diminishes us all.

The story is centered around the experiences of Ziad Hadhari, the eldest son of a Muslim family living in West Beirut, one of the hot spots in Lebanon's civil war during the period spanning roughly the years from 1975 to early 1985. The Hadhari family and their circle of friends and neighbors become the crucible through which we can see how our humanity is affected by war. As the conflict between the various factions - Christians, Muslims and Jews - escalates, all of the characters are all forced to make stark choices. Should they participate in the atrocities perpetrated by the warring factions, fan the flames of hatred, stand on the sidelines, or in the case of one family choose to flee the scene?

Having survived a massacre by right wing Christians, Ziad at first vows to exact revenge for the massacre, but eventually comes to the realization that he does not want to participate in the bloody reprisals which are everyday occurrences in the war zone. The story follows Ziad's inner journey from hatred to fear and finally reconciliation as he attempts to work to counter the atmosphere of fear, tension and senseless violence engendered by the war. He finally makes good on his promise to emigrate to America in search of a better life.

The one thing that the book is missing is a sense of the geo-political power structures at work in the Middle East.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
3.0 out of 5 stars Eye-opening but painful to read
Very painful to read. The fighting and killing where he lived in Lebanon was terrible. The way his father and brother treated him and their other relatives were not good. Read more
Published 2 days ago by Margery A Davis
5.0 out of 5 stars would highly recommend it. Understand it had a new title given ...
very well written and very relative to todays world...would highly recommend it . Understand it had a new title given to it recently.... Read more
Published 18 days ago by penelope poehlmann
5.0 out of 5 stars I have lived overseas for much of my career and a good part of that in...
I have a doctorate in International Relations from the same University as Condoleezza Rice and Madeline Albright. Read more
Published 21 days ago by International Consultant
5.0 out of 5 stars horrifying detail what it is like to be a child trying to grow up...
This book should be required reading for high school students and all adults. It contains historic lessons about the ugly results of intolerance, religious and otherwise. Read more
Published 1 month ago by nancy k Murray
3.0 out of 5 stars It's okay
This may be a good book but it got so intense I could not finish it.
Published 6 months ago by Susan Hawkins
5.0 out of 5 stars Muslims, christians, jews... are first humans
This book is a "must read "by all those who have' questions on thevarious wars issued in particular in the Middle East. Read more
Published 8 months ago by Tolya
4.0 out of 5 stars this was a very good book. Would recommend this book
Lots of brutality, but this is a common occurrence in the part of the world this book represents. Other than an occasional cringe when reading descriptions of atrocities suffered... Read more
Published 9 months ago by A. Bocchino
4.0 out of 5 stars Slow start, engaging story
Coming of age in a war zone is complicated. One would hope such tales were entirely fiction, but details fit with recent history so that while truth may be stranger than fiction,... Read more
Published 10 months ago by S. McClear
5.0 out of 5 stars Eye opening
This is a great book to read if you want to know the truth about religious zealots. I highly recommend it.
Published 12 months ago by marilyn kobialka
5.0 out of 5 stars Remarkable
This book grabbed my attention from the very beginning and made me not want to put it back down! There was never a dull moment in this book and definitely will keep you engaged... Read more
Published 13 months ago by Cheyenne Zeiler
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More About the Author

Sam Wazan is a fifteen-year combat-zone survivor. He is an inspirational speaker, a grassroots catalyst for peace, and Global Trustee at United Religions Initiative. He is also a Senior Management Consultant helping multi-national organizations achieve breakthrough solutions and innovations.

Wazan has an authentic experience in the inhumane effects of conflicts. In his Key Note speech: Ending Religious Violence: The Journey to Peace, he reflects on his first year of war, when his best friend in fifth grade got killed. He grew up surrounded by remorseless sniper fire, indiscriminate rocket attacks, and vicious religious massacres. He escaped a kidnap attempt, lived under a ninety-day siege, and took shelter alternating between the stairways and a garage depot, depending on the intensity of battles.

In 1985, and while in Lebanon pursuing a Bachelors of Science, Wazan represented his sect on the Lebanese National Universities basketball team. He played in the world-universities championship held in Kobe, Japan. There, he got his first exposure to the world in harmony. After two more years of travelling on basketball teams, he daringly joined a Christian club, becoming the first to cross the religion barrier during wartime Lebanon.

Two years later, Wazan found it hopeless to aspire for security and prosperity in a country ensnared by religious violence, geopolitical conflicts, and citizens clustered into two roles: victims and perpetrators. In his quest to leave the region, he traveled through battle fields, where the Syrian and Lebanese armies clashed. He risked his life to apply for a visa at the United States of America Embassy in Damascus. Four days later and in 1989, he emigrated to the USA.

In 1995, he earned an MBA. In 2000, he founded an Information Technology services firm, which he sold in 2005.

In 2009, Wazan resigned from a prestigious corporate position. His searing drive to catalyze peace led him to write his personally inspired story and thrust him into public speaking.
Wazan is in high demand. He is a Key Note speaker at universities, corporations, and nonprofit organizations speaking on Limited Choices & High Stakes: Breaking through a Lesser Normal. He inspires audience members to embrace change, love life, and move from a continuous improvement frame of mind to achieving mental breakthroughs.

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