City of Thorns by Ben Rawlence
As heard on BBC Radio 4’s look of the Week’ ‘At once both an intimate story of redemption and hope, a prayer for the innocent, and a damning universal indictment… Brilliant’ Wade Davis, author of into the Silence
‘Hell on earth’. A ‘nursery for terrorists’. A dangerous no-go area. Dadaab, the world’s largest refugee camp, has been called all these things and more, and the Kenyan government has vowed to shut it down. But for the half a million people who live there, it is their only option. Among them are Guled, a former child soldier who lives for football; Nisho, who scrapes an existence and dreams of riches; and Kheyro, a schoolgirl whose future hangs upon her education. Following the hopes and fortunes of nine Dadaab residents, City of Thorns brings to life this strange and desperate place through the stories of the people who, for now, still call it home. ‘A clear-eyed account of people living in limbo and a testament both to human frailty and human resilience… As timely as Rachel Carson’s Silent Spring — this book should be required reading’
‘Magisterial… it moves like a thriller… City of Thorns is as much about the refugees it describes’ LA Times
‘An absorbing book, full of heart’ New Statesman ‘Superb… These are stories that need to be heard’ Observer ‘Rawlence teases out a narrative that, like Dadaab, pulsates with life’The Times ‘Full of compassion and dignity’ Daily Telegraph ‘Gripping’ Economist
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