Fundamentalism and Forgiveness: A Look inside “A House in the Sky”

As an avid reader and traveler, I enjoy finding books that will not only entertain but educate me. Most books I read are not always the most pleasant topic matter and give a rather intense look at the world. I try to read a lot on women’s rights and current events around the world, and occasionally throw in a poetic piece of fiction for fun.

Last night I completed reading “A House in the Sky“, a harrowing account of Canadian journalist Amanda Lindhout’s 460 days held hostage by Islamic fundamentalists in Somalia.  Co-authored by The New York Times Magazine’s Sara Corbett,  A House in the Sky is one of the most intense books I’ve read in years. A book that by the end, left me in tears.


Beautifully written in reflective, poetic prose the book starts off slowly with Amanda’s story of how she was raised by a dysfunctional, poor family outside of Calgary and how she used her money as a waitress to support her wanderlust and see the world. To be honest, there were many times over the course of the first 100 pages of Amanda’s back story that made me want to put the book away and stop reading. Oftentimes I find personal narratives a bit narcissistic and vain such was the case with reading the best-selling books “Eat, Pray, Love” and “Wild“. Yet something in Amanda’s story kept me reading it, wanting to get to the story of her abduction and subsequent 15 months in captivity by Somalian jihadists.

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