BookBrowse Reviews Guest House for Young Widows by Azadeh Moaveni

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Guest House for Young Widows

Among the Women of ISIS

by Azadeh Moaveni

Guest House for Young Widows by Azadeh Moaveni X
Guest House for Young Widows by Azadeh Moaveni
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  • Published:
    Sep 2019, 352 pages


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Book Reviewed by:
Karen Lewis
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About this Book



In this in-depth account of ISIS, Pulitzer Prize finalist Azadeh Moaveni profiles thirteen women who chose to join the terrorist group following its ascent to power in the 2010s.

In her fourth book, Guest House for Young Widows: Among the Women of ISIS, Iranian-American journalist Azadeh Moaveni presents a riveting study of young Muslim women who searched for purpose by joining ISIS (the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria) in the turbulent years following the 2011 Arab Spring.

Covering the years 2007 to 2017, Moaveni—who has reported on the Middle East for two decades—profiles thirteen young women who grew up in Germany, Great Britain, Tunisia, and Syria. As different as their backgrounds are, each chose to become a muhajirat, a female traveler who emigrates from her home to live within ISIS's self-proclaimed caliphate. Over time many became disillusioned by the contradictions they noticed between the teachings of the Quran and the atrocities they witnessed within ISIS. For example, women were severely punished for slight dress code violations and ...

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