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A House in the Sky

A Memoir

This book is available for download with iBooks on your Mac or iOS device, and with iTunes on your computer. Books can be read with iBooks on your Mac or iOS device.


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).

From Publishers Weekly

Jun 24, 2013 – Canadian journalist Lindhout gives a well-honed, harrowing account of her 459-day captivity at the hands of Somali Islamist rebels. Bit by the travel bug early in her life, partly due to the stultifying conditions at home in Sylvan Lake, in Alberta, Canada, where she lived with her single mom and abusive Native American boyfriend, Lindhout was attracted to the exotic world depicted within the pages of National Geographic and vowed to go somewhere as soon as she could. Working at an Alberta nightclub called the Drink, Lindhout was able to cobble together money to travel over the years, eventually finding herself in Africa and the Middle East, freelancing as a photographer and journalist and having a love affair with a (married) Australian photographer, Nigel Brennan. Convinced war-torn Somalia would be the hurricane to make her career, in August 2008, at age 25, she and Nigel flew to Mogadishu, and, with a fixer and an SUV full of official guards, set off to view a displaced-persons camp but was instead carjacked by a group of kidnappers who demanded millions from the Westerners families. Her captors moved her frequently from hideout to hideout, and she eventually converted to Islam ( They can t kill us if we convert, she told Nigel), was separated from Nigel, and was raped and tortured. Lindhout attempted escape but no one came to her aid. She and Nigel miraculously survived as their families and governments dickered over ransom negotiations.

Customer Reviews

A House in the Sky

I was amazed at the strength and courage portrayed by Amanda, during her ordeal as a hostage held in Somalia. I would recommend every young girl out there to read this book. The tears, I shed, while reading this book, were of sadness for the brutality shown her, joy at her being rescued, and amazement at her forgiveness to her captives. Disbelief that people, in the name of religion, could be so cruel and uncaring towards another human being. Do they, honestly, think that they will be rewarded for doing these horrible crimes?

A real profile in courage

I can't begin to do this book justice. It's a remarkable story about a courageous and remarkable woman. I can't imagine the horror and hardships suffered by a woman held hostage by a group of terrorists for 15 months but she does an amazing job of bringing the reader into that nightmare with her. Never, though, does she wallow in self pity or attempt to hide her own fear or weaknesses. She doesn't have to. Without even trying to do so, her strength and tenacity and endurance shine though on every page. The book is so well written that it reads like a finely crafted novel. Once I picked it up, I didn't want to put it down. In addition to bravely suffering through the atrocities she was subjected to she still had it in her heart to feel compassion not only for the people of Somalia but for her captors as well, acknowledging that their war-torn lives and extremist religion had made them into what they were. She works today to help educate the people of that country, especially the girls and women. I admire her greatly and highly recommend this book. If I could give it more than five stars, I would.

A House in the Sky---a must read

I couldn't put this book down. It was both horrific and inspirational. Thank you, Amanda, for telling your story.

A House in the Sky
View in iTunes
  • $11.99
  • Available on iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, and Mac.
  • Category: Biographies & Memoirs
  • Published: Sep 10, 2013
  • Publisher: Scribner
  • Seller: Simon and Schuster Digital Sales Inc.
  • Print Length: 384 Pages
  • Language: English
  • Requirements: To view this book, you must have an iOS device with iBooks 1.3.1 or later and iOS 4.3.3 or later, or a Mac with iBooks 1.0 or later and OS X 10.9 or later.

Customer Ratings

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