Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Barefoot in Baghdad ~ by Manal M. Omar, 2010

Baghdad, 2003
While reading Barefoot in Baghdad, I wondered how Manal Omar could be so naive about the dangers when she first determined to go to war-torn Iraq and yet remain so determined to help Iraqi women, even after people she knew were killed.  I was visualizing the horrors of war, while she was in the middle of it all, making friends and working hard to set up centers for Iraqi women.  Although Omar is an American, she shows clearly that some of what Americans did was harmful, even when they were trying to be helpful.  I had to keep reminding myself that she lived to write this memoir and, therefore, wouldn't be killed in the next chapter.

I wrote about the beautiful cover last Friday, when I checked this book out of the library.  At that time I had read only the first paragraph.  The book didn't go in the direction I expected, though it held my attention and kept pulling me from page to page.  I came away from my reading feeling pessimistic about the future of Iraq.

Watch a video from USIP (United States Institute of Peace), taped July 17, 2009, in which Manal Omar discusses the state of security in Iraq following the drawdown of U.S. forces and how the country has changed since 2003.  She was in Baghdad from 2003 to 2005.

Helen gave the book a 4.5 of 5 in her review on Helen's Book Blog.  Go read what she wrote.  I rate the book 8 of 10, a very good book, even though I haven't given any details.

1 comment:

Helen's Book Blog said...

I am glad you liked the book. I agree that it didn't take the direction I expected, but that is ok since I enjoyed where it went. Very interesting stuff!