From the author of The Pearl That Broke Its Shell comes an unforgettable story of terror, survival, perseverance, and hope that chronicles one extraordinarily brave Afghan woman's odyssey to save her family and find asylum in the West—a tale of a daring escape, a perilous trek across Europe, and the courage and tenacity of one defiant woman.
Mahmoud's passion for his wife Fereiba, a schoolteacher, is greater than any love she's ever known. But their happy middle-class world—a life of education, work, and comfort—implodes when their country is engulfed in war and the Taliban rise to power.
Mahmoud, a civil engineer, becomes a target of the new fundamentalist regime and is murdered. Forced to flee Kabul with her three children, Fereiba has one hope to survive: she must find a way to cross Europe and reach her sister's family in England. With forged papers and help from kind strangers they meet along the way, Fereiba and her children make a dangerous crossing into Iran under cover of darkness. Exhausted and brokenhearted but undefeated, Fereiba manages to smuggle them as far as Greece. But in a busy market square, their fate takes a frightening turn when her teenage son, Saleem, becomes separated from the rest of the family. Faced with an impossible choice, Fereiba pushes on with her daughter and baby, while Saleem falls into the shadowy underground network of undocumented Afghans who haunt the streets of Europe's capitals. Fereiba and Saleem struggle to reunite, and ultimately find a place where they can begin to reconstruct their lives.