In her memoir, "A House in the Sky," Amanda Lindhout recounts her experience as a young woman backpacking across the world, her aspirations as a journalist and the horrifying 15 months she spent in captivity as a hostage in Somalia.
From the Star Tribune review:
Lindhout's memoir is a story of a woman who endured the unimaginable: 450 days of rapes and beatings with little food and dirty drinking water, her hands and feet tied so tightly that at times she couldn't breathe. For weeks at a time, she and Australian photographer Nigel Brennan were kept in isolated houses in black, windowless rooms. Worse, however, were the weeks they spent in apartments close enough to others to hear the muezzins' call to prayer and the chatter of women shopping. Yet even there, escape -- and, at times, hope -- was impossible: "It was unclear whether we'd find any help or simply get kidnapped all over again by someone who saw us the same way our captors did -- not just as enemies, but enemies worth money."
As much as "House" is a horror story, it's also very much a love story: of Lindhout's love for travel, for family, for adventure and, incredibly, for the Somali people -- even her captors, some as young as 14, whom she believes might not have turned violent if Somalia provided its people better educations and opportunities.
After her release, she decided to counter the horrific treatment she endured by founding an organization to feed and educate the Somali people. She is in town for an event co-hosted by Magers & Quinn Booksellers and the American Refugee Committee at the Loft Literary Center Tuesday evening.