A House in the Sky: A Memoir
Amanda Lindhout, Sara Corbett
Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub
BREAKING NEWS: Amanda Lindhout’s lead kidnapper, Ali Omar Ader, has been caught.
Amanda Lindhout wrote about her fifteen month abduction in Somalia in A House in the Sky. It is the New York Times bestselling memoir of a woman whose curiosity led her to the world’s most remote places and then into captivity: “Exquisitely told…A young woman’s harrowing coming-of-age story and an extraordinary narrative of forgiveness and spiritual triumph” (The New York Times Book Review).
As a child, Amanda Lindhout escaped a violent household by paging through issues of National Geographic and imagining herself visiting its exotic locales. At the age of nineteen, working as a cocktail waitress, she began saving her tips so she could travel the globe. Aspiring to understand the world and live a significant life, she backpacked through Latin America, Laos, Bangladesh, and India, and emboldened by each adventure, went on to Sudan, Syria, and Pakistan. In war-ridden Afghanistan and Iraq she carved out a fledgling career as a television reporter. And then, in August 2008, she traveled to Somalia—“the most dangerous place on earth.” On her fourth day, she was abducted by a group of masked men along a dusty road.
Held hostage for 460 days, Amanda survives on memory—every lush detail of the world she experienced in her life before captivity—and on strategy, fortitude, and hope. When she is most desperate, she visits a house in the sky, high above the woman kept in chains, in the dark.
Vivid and suspenseful, as artfully written as the finest novel, A House in the Sky is “a searingly unsentimental account. Ultimately it is compassion—for her naïve younger self, for her kidnappers—that becomes the key to Lindhout’s survival” (O, The Oprah Magazine).
of infidels?” I’d heard him refer to the United States this way many times before. The question seemed to make Romeo momentarily uncomfortable, as if he recognized the hypocrisy, but he bounced back, his tone languid and even. “Allah says that we can go to these countries if there is a purpose,” he said. “If we can take something from that country and we can then give it to the Islamic community, then it is good.” Sometimes he would venture into a coyer sort of conversation. “Do you think
else, something missing—a sudden absence of conviction. A doubt when I wasn’t used to having doubts. My grandmother, I knew, would have labeled it a much-needed attack of common sense, but that, to my mind, was code for being afraid of new things. I spent a week considering my options. I left Peshawar and headed away from Afghanistan, taking a few long bus rides to get myself all the way across Pakistan and into India, figuring I’d try to see the mountains of Ladakh. I was scheduled to fly home
returned from a few weeks of vacation time in Portugal, traveling again with Kelly. I looked at Julie in disbelief. How could anybody be mad? What could I have done? In my absence, it turned out, some of my neighbors at the Hamra had discovered a video on YouTube. Unbeknownst to me, the Press TV anchor had uploaded a live broadcast I’d done with him a couple of months earlier, when I was still living at the Palestine, before I’d had any real contact with foreign reporters. I hadn’t realized
decades, but in the plane, among the Somalis, it appeared to be causing a stir. We waited for some sort of announcement. The blood seemed to be pumping with extra force through my veins. For a second, I allowed myself to feel relieved by the prospect of being ordered off the plane and back into the Nairobi airport, to have the matter taken entirely out of our hands. But after a few minutes, the plane’s engines kicked on. A flight attendant pulled the door shut, vacuum-sealing us off from the
a meal of stewed goat. Nigel and I were given a small plate to share, along with a few sticky dates, a plate of cookies covered in a thick sugary glaze, and even some toffees. Between us we had one spoon, which Nigel, in a courtly move, passed to me to use. The goat meat was delicious—boiled and tender and served on a heap of oily rice. Afterward, it cramped our stomachs and pulsed savagely through our intestines. We swapped shifts on the toilet and felt ourselves growing dizzy and dehydrated.