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Review: The Fox Hunt by Mohammed Al Samawi

I don’t even know where to begin with a book like this. It is relevant, especially considering what is happening right now. It is needed. It is one of many silence voices that deserves to be heard. When conversations arise about the Middle East, I’m sure for many, stereotypes surface and presumptions about the people are spoken generally. What’s sad is not everyone is bad or has hate in their heart. For those who try to bridge the gap between cultures for a better world, we never hear about them. In a region where religious affiliations and cultural divide are prominent and tumultuous, anyone who risks their life by trying to stand up and fight for interfaith relationships is worth talking about. It takes a village but as the tagline sums up so perfectly, The Fox Hunt is “four strangers, three faiths and one extraordinary escape to freedom.” 

I’ll admit, I was expecting a different kind of book. The more I read, the more I was drawn into a world that I had no idea existed. Yes, I follow the news and know that for a long time, that region of the world fought internally against each other but everyone has a story and Mohammed’s was so compelling. Reading a perspective of someone who’s life was caught in the middle, gave a voice to a vague reality that puts life in perspective. 

Mohammed is someone who was brought up in a culture that was taught to hate other groups with a long list of reasons to support it. Then one day, Mohammed was challenged to a promise by a friend to read a bible, something that conflicted with his life, culture and religion. It opened his heart and mind to learn more about the people he was taught to hate. Secretly asking questions, attending social groups, he put himself in danger and his family but it led him on path that changed his life more than words could ever describe. 

Overall, this was really an inspiring and empowering read. Not just because of him but for the people who put themselves on the line to help him. What a great example of humanitarianism.. It really opened my heart and mind to that area of the world to see a perspective through the eyes of someone who has suffered so much but lived to tell about it. Here’s someone who had a disability from childhood that limited him to an extent physically but never allowed it to be an obstacle. Even when he got death threats and his life was in danger, he kept trying to do the impossible because he wanted to be a voice for change. 

Beyond his story, he is very thorough with the geographic and cultural details which really helps the reader understand the significance of the what was happening. I’m glad I read this because it makes me appreciate the life that I have and the freedom that comes with it. I highly recommend taking a chance to experience his story. You should add this to the tbr pile! 

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