Anissa is traumatized by the most brutal conflict of the 21st Century: the Syrian Civil War. In 2012, Islamists in Homs terrorize a Syrian-Christian community and destroy everything that a young woman holds dear. Narrowly escaping death, Anissa restarts her devastated life as a college student in NY. She is bewildered and lost -- a virgin in every sense.
But despite her inexperience with men and life in the United States, Anissa is quickly drawn to two powerful individuals: Michael Kassab, the Syrian-American leader working to found the first Mideast Christian state, and Julien Morales, her Columbia University professor who runs a $20 billion hedge fund.
Complicating matters, Michael is still attached to his ex-girlfriend and Julien is the most sought after bachelor in Manhattan (and has hidden demons even his therapist can't extract). Anissa's heart and her communal ties pull her in different directions, as she seeks hope and renewal in a dark world.
WARNING: This book is about a young woman's difficult journey: her escape from Syria's Civil War, her transition to a new a country, and the relationships that she forms along the way, including her romantic interests in two very different men. The story is set against the backdrop of the Syrian Civil War and makes reference to violent acts, sometimes in detail. There is some occasional profanity and a few scenes that depict sexual intimacy. Accordingly, the recommended minimum age for readers is 16. The novel might be compared to books like "The Diary of Anne Frank" or "The Kite Runner."
At first I would say this book was different from what I would normally read and this sums up my feelings on it:-
In the beginning it was not my cup of tea, after a few chapters it was sure like My Glass of wine, by the end it was definitely My Bottle of Vintage Champagne,
After the trauma of having to flee her home country, a young 17-year-old Anissa is in a strange country with an Uncle she barely knows to add to her stresses she has vivid memories of what happened to her family who were murdered. After counseling she writes a diary, (a log of information to help her cope), this is the story based on her diaries. Although I am not very keen on religious or any other "war" issues, this story grips you, it takes you on the long journey from dark hateful and vengeful incidents, to how a young woman copes with what happened, how she grows via her inner self, her uncle's inputs, her education and the friends she surrounds herself with. After reading the first few chapters I got totally engrossed in the book, so therefore would recommend this book to anyone even readers like myself who are not keen on the violences raised issues of religious wars and such like, because this book is true, vivid, exceptionally well written, a story that keeps you engrossed to the end and hoping that there is a follow up story.
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