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The Fox Hunt

A Refugee's Memoir of Coming to America

About the Book

A young man’s moving story of war, friendship, and hope in which he recounts his harrowing escape from a brutal civil war in Yemen with the help of a daring plan engineered on social media by a small group of interfaith activists in the West.

Born in the Old City of Sana’a, Yemen, to a pair of middle-class doctors, Mohammed Al Samawi was a devout Muslim raised to think of Christians and Jews as his enemy. But when Mohammed was twenty-three, he secretly received a copy of the Bible, and what he read cast doubt on everything he’d previously believed. After connecting with Jews and Christians on social media, and at various international interfaith conferences, Mohammed became an activist, making it his mission to promote dialogue and cooperation in Yemen.

Then came the death threats: first on Facebook, then through terrifying anonymous phone calls. To protect himself and his family, Mohammed fled to the southern port city of Aden. He had no way of knowing that Aden was about to become the heart of a north-south civil war, and the battleground for a well-funded proxy war between Iran and Saudi Arabia. As gunfire and grenades exploded throughout the city, Mohammed hid in the bathroom of his apartment and desperately appealed to his contacts on Facebook.

Miraculously, a handful of people he barely knew responded. Over thirteen days, four ordinary young people with zero experience in diplomacy or military exfiltration worked across six technology platforms and ten time zones to save this innocent young man trapped between deadly forces— rebel fighters from the north and Al Qaeda operatives from the south.

The story of an improbable escape as riveting as the best page-turning thrillers, The Fox Hunt reminds us that goodness and decency can triumph in the darkest circumstances.

Educator and Librarian Resources

Critical Praise

“Poignant, captivating, disturbing, yet, in the end, hopeful, The Fox Hunt is a haunting and memorable book that illuminates the humanitarian tragedy of Yemen through the life of one of its refugees.” —RABBI DAVID SAPERSTEIN, former US Ambassador-at-Large for International Religious Freedom

“Mohammed Al Samawi’s page-turning memoir, The Fox Hunt, is an unforgettable odyssey through Yemen, and the rocky terrain of religion, identity, and power. Caught in the most desperate of circumstances, he shows us the unexpected heroism of regular people, and gives us the courage to confront prejudice and take action.” —YEONMI PARK, human rights activist and author of In Order to Live: A North Korean Girl’s Journey to Freedom

“Nail-bitingly suspenseful. ... Al Samawi’s ultimate escape is inspiring, as is his determination to continue to work for international peace and understanding. Illuminating and essential reading.” —Booklist (starred review)

“At any moment in history, The Fox Hunt would be a tense, exciting, uplifting story of international intrigue and cross-cultural cooperation. But at this moment, Mohammed Al Samawi has written an urgent and timely book that reminds us of the common threads of the human experience.” —BRUCE FEILER, bestselling author of Walking the Bible and Abraham

“Driving social change in the Arab world is a high stakes game, and Mohammed Al Samawi gambles with his life. A memoir wrapped in a thriller, THE FOX HUNT is one of those rare stories that’s as gripping as it is important.” —BASSEM YOUSSEF, author of Revolution for Dummies and “The Jon Stewart of the Arabic World”

“Compelling. … Powerful. … A refugee’s memoir about hope, fear, luck, and the devotion of people to causes larger than themselves.” —Kirkus Reviews

Product Details

  • ISBN: 9780062791825
  • ISBN 10: 0062791826
  • Imprint: HarperLuxe
  • On Sale: 04/17/2018
  • Pages: 496
  • List Price: 34.99 CAD

The Fox Hunt by Mohammed Al Samawi

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