Graeme Wood on the “Strangers” of the Islamic State

Book review: The Way of the Strangers, by Graeme Wood (Amazon / Book Depository) "Islam began as something strange and it will return to being strange, so blessed are the strangers." -- Sahih Muslim It's difficult to understand much about the extremist ideology of terrorist groups like ISIS, not least because your average non-Muslim doesn't... Continue Reading →

Inside Looks at the Women of ISIS

Book review: Guest House for Young Widows, by Azadeh Moaveni (Amazon / Book Depository) She looked at the girls in the shadows of the backseat, as they drove past grain silos whose towering outlines were visible in the dark. How little they knew what awaited them. They would soon find out that the caliphate ruled... Continue Reading →

Banality Of Evil In An American Tragedy

Book review: The Brothers, by Masha Gessen (Amazon / Book Depository) This American Life is one of my all-time favorite radio shows. But since they're so prolific and have been around for so long, I'm always eons behind on episodes, so I tend to skip through the archives looking for something interesting. That's how I landed on a 2014... Continue Reading →

Catfishing ISIS

Book review: In the Skin of a Jihadist, by Anna Erelle (Amazon / Book Depository) When one worked on “societal” issues, it was out of passion. If only I could write about this topic in a new way, one that avoided treating individuals as part of a succession of similar cases. I wanted to investigate... Continue Reading →

Jihad, Choices, and Fearless Journalism

Book review: I Was Told to Come Alone, by Souad Mekhennet (Amazon / Book Depository) Sometimes a reporter is simply lucky enough to pick the right restaurant for tea. That's one way journalist Souad Mekhennet, a contributor to the New York Times and Washington Post, among others, and a veritable force in modern journalism, describes her experience in 2001, listening... Continue Reading →

Out of ISIS

Book review: The Girl Who Beat Isis, by Farida Khalaf with Andrea C. Hoffmann (Amazon / Book Depository) New English translation of the memoir of a young Yazidi girl's experiences in ISIS captivity. It's horrifying stuff, but she turns out to be more of a fighter than any of the ISIS soldiers she encounters. I was... Continue Reading →

Create a free website or blog at WordPress.com.

Up ↑