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Mayada, Daughter of Iraq: One Woman's Survival Under Saddam Hussein by [Jean Sasson]

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Mayada, Daughter of Iraq: One Woman's Survival Under Saddam Hussein Kindle Edition

4.6 out of 5 stars 223 ratings

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Length: 317 pages Word Wise: Enabled Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
Page Flip: Enabled Age Level: 18 and up Grade Level: 12 and up

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

When author Sasson (Esther's Child; Princess Sultana's Circle; etc.) was assigned Mayada Al-Askari as a translator on a 1998 trip to Baghdad, she had no idea she would form a lasting friendship with this fluent English-speaker and member of a prominent Iraqi family. When Sasson returned to the United States, the two women wrote letters and telephoned each other weekly until, in 1999, Mayada was arrested by Saddam Hussein's secret police for allegedly printing anti-regime pamphlets in her Baghdad print shop and imprisoned for nearly a month in Iraq's brutal Baladiyat Prison. Sasson's candid, straightforward account of Mayada's time among the 17 "shadow women" crammed into Cell 52 gives readers a glimpse of the cruelty and hardship endured by generations of Iraqis. Mayada stares down this ugliness as soon as she's yanked from her meticulously run shop into the prison's interrogation room: "She saw chairs with bindings, tables stacked high with various instruments of torture.... But the most frightening pieces of... equipment were the various hooks that dangled from the ceiling. When Mayada glanced to the floor beneath those hooks, she saw splashes of fresh blood, which she supposed were left over from the torture sessions she had heard during the night." Sasson's graceful handling of such stomach-turning material, including an overview of Iraq's political and social turmoil, is a tribute to her friend, who escaped to Jordan with her children soon after her release from prison. Although Mayada's story has a happy ending, the unclear fates of her cell mates serve as a painful reminder of how many innocent lives were cut short by Hussein's regime.
Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Booklist

Sasson, author of Princess: A True Story of Life behind the Veil in Saudi Arabia (1992), first met Mayada in 1998. A year later, Mayada, granddaughter of a revered Iraqi hero who fought with Lawrence of Arabia, a former journalist, modern businesswoman, and the mother of two children, was arrested and imprisoned on allegations that her business was printing antigovernment flyers. Sasson relates Mayada's imprisonment with 17 "shadow women," similarly falsely accused and imprisoned and subjected to torture and cruelty under the regime of Saddam Hussein. To distract themselves, the women tell each other stories of their lives, and Mayada discloses her high-born, privileged lifestyle even though her family were not members of the leading Baath Party. She recalls her mother's acquaintance with Hussein's wife and their mutual dislike. Mayada also tells of interviews with the cruel and erratic Ali Hassan al-Majid, Hussein's cousin and the man who would become known as Chemical Ali. This is a fascinating behind-the-scenes look at the cruelties suffered by the Iraqis under Hussein. Vanessa Bush
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Product details

  • Publication date : September 7, 2004
  • File size : 2440 KB
  • Word Wise : Enabled
  • Print length : 317 pages
  • Publisher : Berkley; Reprint edition (September 7, 2004)
  • Enhanced typesetting : Enabled
  • X-Ray : Not Enabled
  • Text-to-Speech : Enabled
  • Screen Reader : Supported
  • Lending : Not Enabled
  • Language: : English
  • ASIN : B002HFJ6WO
  • Customer Reviews:
    4.6 out of 5 stars 223 ratings

Customer reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
4.6 out of 5
223 global ratings
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VicsCaff
4.0 out of 5 stars Neglected voices heard
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on August 3, 2015
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5.0 out of 5 stars Unforgettable book that will squeeze your heart
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5.0 out of 5 stars What a terrible life
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4.0 out of 5 stars I did not finish this book because I found it ...
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sammi
5.0 out of 5 stars interesting
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on February 11, 2016
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