to @ava.homa on the release of
Born in Iran, Leila yearns to attend University but once her younger brother, Chia, is imprisoned for political protests, she publishes his journals in the hopes of freeing him. Instead, it brings unwanted attention to herself and her parents. Will she be able to escape the confines and prejudices of being born a Kurd in Iran, or will her activism be in vain?
This moving account about a Kurdish woman’s efforts to free her brother from prison was emotionally powerful, yet also filled with hope. I haven’t read much about this country or culture and found the story and history both interesting and heartbreaking. I felt the immense bond between siblings, and my heart broke for them when they were separated. “Life was a landfill. What made one humane was the ability to convert the waste into a valuable resource and to enjoy the occasional flowers that bloomed in the refuse.” According to the author’s note at the end, this story was inspired by real life activist, Farzad Kamangar, as well as Leila (in which the main character was named), the author’s friend, who is a Kurdish activist.
Location: Iran and Canada
I received an advance copy of this book. All opinions are my own.