Wednesday, August 03, 2016

The Girl Who Beat Isis

Co-written by Dr Andrea C Hoffman
Square Peg - NZ$38.00

The astonishing true account of Farida Khalaf’s capture, enslavement and eventual escape from ISIS terrorists
In August 2014, Farida was like any ordinary teenage girl enjoying the summer holidays and looking forward to her last year at school, where she excelled at maths and was nicknamed ‘Calculator’. Living with her parents and four brothers, she looked after their beautiful garden, had picnics with friends – and practised with the family’s AK47. For Farida is a Yazidi who lived on the mountains of northern Iraq, surrounded by Muslim Arabs under an uneasy peace.

Yet what happened next was unimaginable. As ISIS gained power and swept through the region, her village became a target. They murdered the men and boys, including her father and brother, before taking Farida and the other women prisoner. The Girl Who Beat ISIS is the story of what happened to Farida after she was captured: taken to Syria where she endured beatings, rapes and the markets where ISIS sold women like cattle. Farida realised that the more resistant she became, the harder it was for her captors to continue their atrocities against her. So she struggled, she bit, she kicked, she accused the terrorists of going against their religion. And then, one day, the door to her room was left unlocked and with five younger girls in her charge, she fled into the desert.
The Girl Who Beat ISIS is Farida’s brave testimony in the face of the unthinkable. Wanting to bear witness to the horror she endured, the book is a searing, important and urgent account that shows first-hand what life is for women and girls caught up in one of the biggest global threats of our time.

Farida Khalaf was brought up in the Yazidi community in Kocho, a village to the south of Mount Sinjar in northern Iraq. She was nineteen-years-old when ISIS kidnapped her and held her for four months. After being reunited with her mother and remaining brothers in an Iraqi refugee camp, she was granted asylum in Germany in 2015.
Dr Andrea C Hoffman lives in Berlin working as an author and a journalist for Focus magazine. She specializes in the Middle East and the situation of women in Muslim countries. Recent books include: Ensaf Haidar: Freedom For Raif Badawi and Latifa Nabizada: Reach For The Stars, Sister!

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