Synopsis: At the age of nineteen, Amanda Lindhout moved from Red Deer to Calgary and began to travel the globe. She backpacked through Latin America, Laos, Bangladesh, and India, and, emboldened by each experience, went on to travel solo across Sudan, Syria, and Pakistan. In war-ridden Afghanistan and Iraq, she carved out a fledgling career as a TV reporter. And then, in August 2008, she traveled to Mogadishu, Somalia - 'the most dangerous place on earth' - to report on the fighting there. On her fourth day in the country, she was abducted and then held captive for fifteen months.
Vivid and suspenseful, as artfully written as the finest novel, A House in the Sky is the searingly intimate story of an intrepid young woman and her search for compassion in the face of unimaginable adversity.
Sometimes you read a book and it changes your entire perspective on life. A House in the Sky is one of those books. It is a horrifying glimpse into Amanda's experience in captivity. The abuse she suffered at the hands of her captors including starvation, torture, and rape is at times excruciating to read. There were times when I had to put the book down for a few minutes just to process what I had read. I can't imagine how much worse it would be to actually experience the things she went through. But she did and she survived to tell her story and even though it is hard to read, I believe it is one of those books that should be read by everyone. It is about hope and compassion and how to stay strong even when it seems that things will never get better.
I admire Amanda's strength and resilience throughout but most of all I admire her compassion and empathy. It is a very rare person that can go through something like this and come out with a sense of hopefulness and gratitude.