My Accidental Jihad

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9781616200688: My Accidental Jihad


Two people who grew up oceans and cultures apart make the brave attempt to cross the divide and forge one family.


Fifteen years ago, Krista Bremer would not have been able to imagine her life today: married to a Libyan-born Muslim, raising two children with Arabic names in the American South. Nor could she have imagined the prejudice she would encounter or the profound ways her marriage would change her perception of the world. But on a running trail in North Carolina, she met an older man named Ismail. He was passionate and sincere -- and he loved adventure as much as she did. From acquaintances to lovers to a couple facing an unexpected pregnancy, this is the story of two people--a middle-class American raised in Southern California and a Muslim raised by illiterate parents in an impoverished Libyan fishing village -- who made a commitment to one another without forsaking their own identities. Their compelling journey, which takes the reader from the contemporary south to a restless Libya in flux, provides a lesson to each of us on how to determine our own truths.
It is the story of a bicultural marriage--and aren't all marriages bicultural? Whether we marry someone from the opposite side of the world or from our own hometown, we are bound to discover that our mate is foreign to us, with very different assumptions about home and family. How we respond to difference shapes our families, our communities, and our world.

Fascinating, often funny, and profoundly moving, this meditation on tolerance explores what it means to open our hearts to another culture and, just as important, to embrace our own. It is Krista Bremer's unexpected struggle to reach beyond herself, her accidental jihad.

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Product Description:

Fifteen years ago, Krista Bremer would not have been able to imagine her life today: married to a Libyan-born Muslim, raising two children with Arabic names in the American South. Nor could she have imagined the prejudice she would encounter or the profound ways her marriage would change her perception of the world.

But on a running trail in North Carolina, she met Ismail. He was passionate and sincere—and he loved adventure as much as she did. From acquaintances to lovers to a couple facing an unexpected pregnancy, this is the story of two people—a middle-class American raised in California and a Muslim raised by illiterate parents in an impoverished Libyan fishing village—who made a commitment to each other without forsaking their own identities.

It is the story of a bicultural marriage—and aren’t all marriages bicultural? In any marriage, we might discover that our mate is foreign to us, with very different language, memories, and assumptions about home and family. How we respond to difference shapes our world.

Profoundly moving and often funny, this meditation on tolerance explores what it means to open our hearts to another culture and to embrace our own. It is Krista Bremer’s unexpected struggle to reach beyond herself, her accidental Jihad.

From the Back Cover:

ji·had also je·had (j-häd)
n.
1. Islam An individual’s striving for spiritual and intellectual growth.

“Lucid, heartfelt, and profoundly humane, My Accidental Jihad navigates the boundaries of religion and politics to arrive at the universal experience of love.” —G. Willow Wilson, author of Alif the Unseen

“Told with rare honesty, My Accidental Jihad is the story of Krista Bremer’s lifelong quest for insight and understanding, a search that leads her out of the Pacific surf to journalism school in North Carolina and through the complex challenges and unexpected joys of a cross-cultural marriage and family. This book is a powerfully personal account of the courage and hard work necessary to open one’s heart and keep it that way.” —Maggie Shipstead, author of Seating Arrangements

My Accidental Jihad is one of the most captivating and moving memoirs I’ve read in years. The story Krista Bremer tells--one of radical foreignness between a married couple--could be a metaphor for all committed relationships.” —Haven Kimmel, author of A Girl Named Zippy

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