For three months in the spring of 1994, the African nation of Rwanda descended into one of the most vicious and bloody genocides the world has ever seen. Immaculeacute;e Ilibagiza, a young university student, miraculously survived the savage killing spree that left most of her family, friends, and a million of her fellow citizens dead. Immaculeacute;e's remarkable story of survival was documented in her first book, Left to Tell: Discovering God Amidst the Rwandan Holocaust. In Led By Faith, Immaculeacute;e takes us with her as her remarkable journey continues. Through her simple and eloquent voice, we experience her hardships and heartache as she struggles to survive and to find meaning and purpose in the aftermath of the holocaust. It is the story of a naiuml;ve and vulnerable young woman, orphaned and alone, navigating through a bleak and dangerously hostile world with only an abiding faith in God to guide and protect her. Immaculeacute;e fends off sinister new predators, seeks out and comforts scores of children orphaned by the genocide, and searches for love and companionship in a land where hatred still flourishes. Then, fearing again for her safety as Rwanda's war-crime trials begin, Immaculeacute;e flees to America to begin a new chapter of her life as a refugee and immigrant-a stranger in a strange land. With the same courage and faith in God that led her through the darkness of genocide, Immaculeacute;e discovers a new life that was beyond her wildest dreams as a small girl in a tiny village in one of Africa's poorest countries. It is in the United States, her adopted country, where Immaculeacute;e can finally look back at all that has happened to her and truly understand why God spared her life . . . so that she would be left to tell her story to the world.
In Left to Tell, survivor and activist Ilibagiza documented her experience in the three-month 1994 Rwanda genocide that killed more than a million. Here she describes the twin struggles--personal and national--to pick up the pieces and move on. The shameful refusal of the international community to restrain the rampage is well known, but readers will be less familiar with the role of the Zaire government and international relief forces, which allowed armed Hutu killers to retreat to a safe haven and launch attacks on Rwanda for two more years; in 1996, the new Rwandan government finally invaded Zaire to stop the Hutu army. Ilibagiza writes personally and vividly about how her deep religious faith sustained her in the years following the massacre. Though most of her family were murdered, and threats to her life would eventually force her to flee for the U.S. (with husband and while pregnant), Ilibagiza's belief in reconciliation never falters: "we will never heal as individuals, or as a nation, until we can forgive each other and start forgiving ourselves." Whether or not readers share her faith, this hard-to-put-down memoir is an inspiring tale of courage and humanity under the most calamitous of circumstances. Color photos. (Sept.) Copyright 2008 Reed Business Information.
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Hay House, Incorporated
September 14, 2009
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