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Call Me American

S like Michael Jackson and watching films starring action heroes like Arnold Schwarzenegger When US marines landed in Moga Growing up in war torn Somalia Abdi Nor Iftin narrowly escaped death than a few times Watching American movies provided a source of comfort to him and it s how he was able to learn English But in 2006 Islamic extremists come to power and Western culture influences are not only banned but could have deadly conseuences for Abdi With the help of strangers who have been captivated by Abdi sharing his experiences on NPR and the Internet he is able to flee to Kenya and eventually finds his way to America via the visa lottery But does the land of the free meet Abdi s expectationsI feel like whatever I write in this review won t do this book justice I really hope this book finds an audience because Abdi s life story is incredible and one worth reading I read memoirs freuently including ones that take place in war torn countries and I would place this book among the very best I have read in the genre It took me on a roller coaster of emotions His descriptions of his life growing up are heartbreaking but through it all his spirit somehow remains unbreakable I can t say enough good things about this book and it s one I highly recommendThank you First to Read for the opportunity to read an advance digital copy I was under no obligation to post a review and all views considered are my honest opinion

Free read Call Me American

Abdi Nor Iftin first fell in love with America from afar As a child he learned English by listening to American pop artist A page turner of a book Whether speaking of his upbringing in rural Somalia or in Mogadishu and then later joining his brother in Nairobi Kenya you are mesmerized by this autobiographyAbdi Nor Iftin became a fan of American movies the action kind in his teenage years in Mogadishu From his avid watching he gradually started to learn English mind you many of the expressions he picked up were from The Terminator type of movies so you can guess some of the expressions He became a simultaneous translator during movie presentations in a small house in Mogadishu where these movies were shown on the sly At that time Mogadishu was occupied by different warring clans Life was beyond stressful and Abdi was pulled into many different directions He had an Islamic upbringing and was tutored in the uran at a mosue where the Iman freuently beat his students and proclaimed that Western culture was sinful so movies music independent women as in women singing and dancing all were forbidden and disdainedAbdi moved warily between these two opposing ways of life but really preferred the movies over attending the strict mosue where the Iman yelled at and beat his students for not properly memorizing passages from the uranPage 96 my book When Said Barre s government in Mogadishu fell the citizens stormed into the government arms stockpile There were guns in the city than people There was ammunition than food It became a thing to own a gun to save your life Most people slept with a loaded AK 47 sitting next to themThere are searing descriptions of life in Mogadishu where Abdi is constantly under violent threat and where searching for food to overcome hunger was a daily task The author leaves his mother and sister in Mogadishu for fear of being recruited in al Shabaab and goes to join his brother in Nairobi Kenya Life is no picnic there as he settles with his brother in an enclave in Nairobi known as Little Mogadishu The Kenyan police constantly round up Somalians and extract bribes from them otherwise they will be beaten The level of harassment increases on Somalians when al Shabaab starts to target and terrorize different areas of Kenya and NairobiAfter many types of applications and interviews Abdi manages to get a green card to go to the United States in a lottery process where he is luckily randomly selected He enters the United States and it would be nice to say that all his dreams come true He gets a lot of help from American people from the contacts he made in Mogadishu and Nairobi this is where his English language skills helped tremendously Abdi adapts and struggles to adjust to his dreamThis is a beautifully written memoir and you always feel the positive vibrations emanating from Abdi no matter how low his situation becomes particularly during the tough years in Mogadishu It should be noted that only a small portion of the book at the end is devoted to his new life in the United States

Free read ô eBook, ePUB or Kindle PDF ð Abdi Nor Iftin

Dishu to take on the warlords Abdi cheered the arrival of these real Americans who seemed as heroic as those of the movies This memoir tells the story of Abdi Iftin affectionately known as Abdi American who survives several civil wars in Somalia and comes to emigrate to America through grit perseverance and a little bit of luck This book was extremely graphic in the way it described the horrors Abdi and his family faced in addition to being subject to extreme poverty and abuse at the hand of his schoolteacher It also contained some interesting tidbits such as how one little boy from his neighborhood ended up fleeing Somalia to become a breakout star in the Tom Hanks film Captain PhillipsOne of my gripes with this book is it tended to drag on during certain parts of his story I found myself uickly skimming through certain paragraphs that I felt didn t add anything new or relevant to his life story Also I was left feeling unsatisfied with the last chapter in the book There were some unanswered uestions that would have wrapped up the story nicely For example what happened with Abdi and Fatuma Overall I would recommend this book to read if you re interested in learning about the conditions people in Somalia faced during their civil wars from a firsthand perspective I received this ARC from Random House Publishing Group in exchange for an honest review


About the Author: Abdi Nor Iftin

When the civil war in Somalia began Abdi Nor Iftin was five; he and his brother becamethe sole providers for the family while they also attended a madrassa Amidst the dailyshelling and the famine Abdi had one escape American movies and music Atneighborhood showings of Rambo Commando and The Terminator Abdi learned ofAmerica and taught himself English and began to dream of a life in the U



10 thoughts on “Call Me American

  1. says:

    Studying Political Science I spent many hours learning about unsuccessful peacekeeping operations and failed states The ultimate example Somalia a country shaken by war terrorism and ever changing tribal conflicts so violent and complicated that it makes you feel desperate reading scientific texts about it and they are of course rather detached in language Abdi Nor Iftin was born in Somalia and lived through all of this and his impressiv

  2. says:

    A page turner of a book Whether speaking of his upbringing in rural Somalia or in Mogadishu and then later joining his brother in Nairobi Kenya you are mesmerized by this autobiographyAbdi Nor Iftin became a fan of American movies – the acti

  3. says:

    Phenomenal this has to be one of the best memoirs I've ever read A riveting account of life in war torn Somalia even if memoirs aren't usually your thing I'd implore as many readers as possible to read Abdi's story

  4. says:

    In his Call Me American A Memoir Abdi Nor Iftin provides an indispensable and elouent addition to the canon of American immigrant literature Iftin adroitly relates his story of growing up in Mogadishu with parents forced to abandon t

  5. says:

    My future was a mystery but at least I was leaving hell forever from Call Me American by Abdi Nor IftinAbdi's Somalian parents were nomadic herders of camel and goats His mother bore battle scars from the large cats she fought while protecting her herd In 1977 drought left his parents with no option but to go to the city

  6. says:

    Growing up in war torn Somalia Abdi Nor Iftin narrowly escaped death than a few times Watching American movies provided a source of c

  7. says:

    can't remember the last time a book made me cry this hard maybe bridge to terabithia I went all day after reading this book It's harrowing to be reminded that life is so hard for so many people Abdi gets a magic ticket that saves him from war violence and oppression an American visa I can relate He won the life lottery and it makes me so sad that so many people have to leave their home country just to feel safe Everyone should r

  8. says:

    This memoir tells the story of Abdi Iftin affectionately known as Abdi American who survives several civil wars in Somalia and comes to emigrate to America through grit perseverance and a little bit of luck This bo

  9. says:

    In the dictionary as a definition to the word optimist should be Abdi Nor Iftin's photograph He grew up in Somalia where he learned English by w

  10. says:

    Call Me American A Memior by Abdi Nor Iftin did a number on me I felt for Abdi and what his family went through and might still be going through The world can be so tiring at times sighThis Memior is about Abdi who grew up in Somalia which is in constant war We get a first hand account what it is like living in a country that is con

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