A House In The Sky: A Memoir

Hardcover | December 11, 2013

byAmanda Lindhout

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The dramatic memoir of a woman whose curiosity about the world led her from rural Canada to imperiled and dangerous countries on every continent, and then into fifteen months of harrowing captivity in Somalia ? a story of courage, resilience, and extraordinary grace.Amanda Lindhout?s intimate account illuminates the psychology, motivations, and desperate extremism of her abductors. Kept in chains, starved and abused, she survives by imagining herself in a "house in the sky," finding strength and hope in the power of her own mind.

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The dramatic memoir of a woman whose curiosity about the world led her from rural Canada to imperiled and dangerous countries on every continent, and then into fifteen months of harrowing captivity in Somalia ? a story of courage, resilience, and extraordinary grace.Amanda Lindhout?s intimate account illuminates the psychology, motivat...

Format:HardcoverDimensions:665 pages, 8.5 × 5.8 × 1.3 inPublished:December 11, 2013Publisher:Thorndike PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:1410463796

ISBN - 13:9781410463791

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Customer Reviews of A House In The Sky: A Memoir

Reviews

Rated 5 out of 5 by from Amazing Book! I read this book and it has been one of my favourite books I have ever read. I got the pleasure of meeting Amanda as well and she is such a wonderful and positive person. Definitely recommend reading this book!
Date published: 2016-11-16
Rated 5 out of 5 by from So much respect I have so much respect for this woman after reading this book. It was truly incredible and amazing to see what she went through to survive.
Date published: 2016-11-16
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great read Bought this book as soon as it came out and haven't regretted. A heavy but beautifully written story.
Date published: 2016-11-07
Rated 5 out of 5 by from BUY IT!! This novel was fantastic, I absolutely loved how personal the author got while telling her story, I recommend it to everyone who is looking for an inspirational story of a young traveller!!
Date published: 2015-09-24
Rated 5 out of 5 by from POWERFUL! Story Description: Scribner|September 10, 2013|Advanced Reader’s Edition||ISBN: 978-1-4516-4560-6 The spectacularly dramatic memoir of a woman whose curiosity about the world led her from rural Canada to imperiled and dangerous countries on every continent and then into fifteen months of harrowing captivity in Somalia – a story of courage, resilience, and extraordinary grace. At the age of eighteen, Amanda Lindhout moved from her hardscrabble Alberta hometown to the big city – Calgary – and worked as a cocktail waitress, saving her tips so she could travel the globe. As a child, she escaped a violent household by paging through National Geographic and imagining herself in its exotic locales. Now she would see those places for real. She backpacked through Latin America, Laos, Bangladesh, and India, and emboldened by each experience, went on to travel solo across Sudan, Syria, and Pakistan. In war-ridden Afghanistan and Iraq she carved out a fledgling career as a TV reporter. And then in August 2008, she traveled to Mogadishu, Somalia – “the most dangerous place on earth” – to report on the fighting there. On her fourth day in the country, she and her photojournalist companion were abducted. An astoundingly intimate and harrowing account of Lindhout’s fifteen months as a captive, A House in the Sky illuminates the psychology, motivations, and desperate extremism of her young guards and the men in charge of them. She is kept in chains nearly starved, and subjected to unthinkable abuse. She survives by imaging herself in a “house in the sky,” looking down at the woman shackled below, and finding strength and hope in the power of her own mind. Lindhourt’s decision, upon her release, to counter the violence he endured by founding an organization to help the Somali people rebuild their country through education is a wrenching testament to the capacity of the human spirit and an astonishing portrait of the power of compassion and forgiveness. My Review: If you read the above ‘Story Description’ you’ll have an exact idea of what this wonderful memoir is about. I only want to add that Amanda Lindhout has to be one of the most courageous women I’ve read about in a long time. The unspeakable abuse she endured day after day for fifteen long months is truly harrowing. To be trussed up like an animal and suspended from a ceiling for forty-eight hours at a time is totally unfathomable to me but she somehow survived by escaping to her “house in the sky” where she watched the woman below her being tortured. One of the guards was particularly gruelling in his abuse and punishment and raped her on an almost daily basis and how she ever endured that I’ll never know, regardless of her ‘house in the sky.’ She had to separate her physical self from her emotional self in order to deal with the horrifying things that were happening to her and they were brutish and inhumane in every way conceivable. I cried while reading several passages in this book and my heart went out to this young woman who showed such strength and resilience in the face of such brutality. Although she suffered unbearable abuse and torture, she still had the passion and compassion at the end of this horrendous journey to set up educational help to aid Somalia in reordering their country. It takes a very, very special person to be able to do that. This book affected me on so many levels, emotionally and spiritually mostly. I honestly and sincerely don’t believe I could ever have survived what this young woman did. I would have died in captivity long before the fifteen months was up. Amanda, you are a true testament to what the human body can withstand and a true testament for other woman to show strength and courage in the face of such horrible adversity. I am so very sorry for what happened to you and thank you for having the courage to share your most intimate story with us. I don’t think I’ll ever forget you and your story. Thank you to GoodReads for sending me a copy of this book which I won in their contest. I wouldn’t have wanted to miss this book for the world and will be keeping it as part of my permanent collection.
Date published: 2013-07-08
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Heartbreaking, yet hopeful and Inspirational The Good Stuff I think this is one of the hardest reviews I have ever had to write. How do you critique someones harrowing life story when you have no writing ability, and have not been through anything even closely related. This fiercely strong women has opened her heart and showed her pain and suffering to complete strangers. I don't want to do a disservice to her story with my inadequate words or trite commentary. Please forgive me for my inadequacy and just do yourself a favor and pick up a copy of this harrowing, yet beautifully told book. Amanda, I admire you and at the same time wish I had the power to make the rest of your life blessed to overcome the violence you faced. Your strength of will and of character is to be admired and your courage and ability to forgive is something we should all strive for. You give me hope for the future. I am so sorry when we met that I knew nothing of your past. I would like to go back in time and just hug you - I know that isn't much, but I am not a hugger by nature if that means anything. deeply personal no holds barred Inspirational Couldn't put this down Never a moment of poor me - she speaks frankly about her background and her ordeal, without ever putting blame on anyone Haunting - this book is still with me eventhough I finished it early June Fascinating and informative Inspirational Hope and Forgiveness are the main messages she want to get through to the world Takes what happened to her, and instead of letting it take hold and bring her down, uses it to try to bring around change and to help this from happening to others SPOILER - The chapter dealing with her attempted escape sickens me. However, the sheer courage of one of those involved who tried to help does a least give me a little hope but at the same time breaks my heart for her probable fate This will win awards my friends. The collaboration between Ms Lindhout and Ms Corbett is seamless and perfect The Not So Good Stuff Had to find something to put here - would have liked to know more about Amanda's life since the ordeal Cover is sorta blah (not sure if that will change for finished product) This is hard for me to say, but I have to be honest, whenever I read tales like this it makes me think even more poorly about that part of the world, and this makes me feel horrible. I am the type of person who wants to believe that there is good in everyone. I truly don't understand how someone who believes in a God, can treat a fellow person this way and than think that a God would not only approve, but reward them for it. Favorite Quotes Passages "It was as if we were poise at the edge of a witch's cauldron or sat at the prow of a great ship in the center of an otherworldly ocean. I had seen this place in the magazine, and now we were here, lost in it. It was a small truth affirmed. And it was all I needed to keep going." "The Kuchis reminded me a little bit of the First Nations people back in Canada, independent and unintegrated and pretty much worse off for it." "I made peace with anyone who might ever have been an enemy. I asked forgiveness for every vain or selfish thing I'd done in my life. Inside the house in the sky, all the people I loved sat down for a big holiday meal. I was safe and protected. It was where all the voices that normally tore through my head expressing fear and wishing for death were silent, until there was only one left speaking. It was a calmer, stronger voice, one that to me felt divine. It said, See? You are okay, Amanda. It's only your body that's suffering, and you are not your body. The rest of you is fine." "For one split second, I knew his suffering. It had assembled itself and looped through me in a rush. Its absolute clarity made me gasp. It was anguish, accrued over the brief span of his life. It was rage and helplessness. It was a little. This was the person who was hurting me. His sadness trenched beneath mine." Who Should Shouldn't Read This may be a difficult read for the more sensitive Other than those who are extremely sensitive, you must read this! 5 Dewey s I received this from the charming and fun Felicia at Simon and Schuster - thanks for the heads up Captain Awesome
Date published: 2013-07-01
Rated 5 out of 5 by from A House in the Sky It was hard to put down once I started readig. The torture Amanda went through is just unimaginable. Shr was a s strong person to endure what she did. Also to forgive her captors was a big thing
Date published: 2015-07-04
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Loved t!! Was hooked on this book from page one. Blown away by Amanda's story. A must read. Will definitey recommend.
Date published: 2015-05-31
Rated 5 out of 5 by from A house in the sky Gripping, painful to read but you cant stop, moving, shocking,full of strength and amazing that a human can endure so much torture and survive
Date published: 2015-04-01
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Excellent book This was a fantastic book. The story was certainly hard to read in parts. Its hard to imagine how someone could endure what she did for so long. Such a brave and strong woman.
Date published: 2015-02-15
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Mindbogglingly!! Absolutely unbelievable what this young woman went through and still survived! It's a five star from me.
Date published: 2015-02-11
Rated 4 out of 5 by from A house in the sky Powerful story. The story of this strong woman touches you in a big way. I am moved and inspired by her love for life and faith in the human race.
Date published: 2015-02-06
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Excellent read A House in the Sky was quite possibly one of the most engrossing, heart wrenching and terrifying books I have ever read.
Date published: 2015-02-06
Rated 5 out of 5 by from A House in the Sky I was told about this book by a male friend of mine, and he said that it was a book that he normally wouldn't have read but he was glad he did. I immeadiatly bought the book. I couldn't put it down! Amanda's story was so heart wrenching and I found myself saying to her like I was there with her, hang on you will make it. Her story had details about cultures on the other side of the world that I did not know. For Amanda to be able to share such personal details of her ordeal is nothing short of heroic and for her to be able to forgive her captors for what they did is so inspirational. I would and have recommended this book to anyone I can. Thank you Amanda for being so generous with your thoughts and experience. Good luck in your ventures in Somalia.
Date published: 2015-01-03
Rated 4 out of 5 by from What a read A book about a courageous woman and her struggle as a captive in Somalia for over a year. Powerful, thought provoking and emotional.
Date published: 2014-12-29
Rated 4 out of 5 by from A House in the Sky This is one of those books that every time I was in a bookstore would stop, pick it up, contemplate and then put back down and tell myself another time. When it was selected as Chapters Indigo's October pick for their #worldsbiggestbookclub I knew it was finally time to dive in. And am I ever glad I did. Such a powerful and moving read full of real emotion. This memoir either seems to speak to you or it doesn't. There are a number of reviews out there that seem to think that Amanda Lindhout may have gotten what she deserves. This is very disheartening. Yes, she may have exposed herself to danger and been naive in thinking she was invincible but no mater if you are traveling in a "safe" country or a war torn country you never know what can happen. No one deserves to be raped, beaten and torched. I found it hard to understand how she remained so positive during her whole ordeal and has even gone as far as to forgive her captors. Just goes to show how strong of a woman she is, and I have nothing but respect for her. I found the first third of the book very interesting, while others found it boring I began to develop jealousy towards Lindhout, she was traveling to all the countries I've only dreamed about visiting and living the dream that many will never get to experience. At the end of her memoir she mentions that Nigel wrote a book about his experience in Somalia and I would be very interesting on hearing his take on being imprisoned and his point of view. I am also excited that the book had been optioned into a movie and it will be very interesting to see how it comes out. What a true story of inspiration and perseverance
Date published: 2014-12-20
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Captivating! The courage in this story held me captive! Amanda is a very brave woman & I am so glad she shared her story.
Date published: 2014-12-10
Rated 5 out of 5 by from A House In The Sky This is a must read, a true story of a Canadian women held captive in for 14 months . Heartbreaking
Date published: 2014-11-17
Rated 5 out of 5 by from A house in the sky Difficult to read at times but had to finish this book.
Date published: 2014-10-16
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Retired Unbelievable to start with later horrifying to think that people like the kidnappers do exist. Such courage to live through it and still be forgiving. Amanda, you are one of a kind. Y
Date published: 2014-10-07
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Well written and touching This book details the events leading up to , during her captivity and after her release. It was well written and dealt with issues such as poverty, desperation, ignorance, and the prisons, real or imaginary, that keep many of us from being really free. A worthwhile read.
Date published: 2014-09-16
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Compelling Wow, the strength and courage Amanda has is indefinable. Her hope and determination. This is a story that will stick with me...
Date published: 2014-08-18
Rated 5 out of 5 by from POWERFUL! Story Description: Scribner|September 10, 2013|Advanced Reader’s Edition||ISBN: 978-1-4516-4560-6 The spectacularly dramatic memoir of a woman whose curiosity about the world led her from rural Canada to imperiled and dangerous countries on every continent and then into fifteen months of harrowing captivity in Somalia – a story of courage, resilience, and extraordinary grace. At the age of eighteen, Amanda Lindhout moved from her hardscrabble Alberta hometown to the big city – Calgary – and worked as a cocktail waitress, saving her tips so she could travel the globe. As a child, she escaped a violent household by paging through National Geographic and imagining herself in its exotic locales. Now she would see those places for real. She backpacked through Latin America, Laos, Bangladesh, and India, and emboldened by each experience, went on to travel solo across Sudan, Syria, and Pakistan. In war-ridden Afghanistan and Iraq she carved out a fledgling career as a TV reporter. And then in August 2008, she traveled to Mogadishu, Somalia – “the most dangerous place on earth” – to report on the fighting there. On her fourth day in the country, she and her photojournalist companion were abducted. An astoundingly intimate and harrowing account of Lindhout’s fifteen months as a captive, A House in the Sky illuminates the psychology, motivations, and desperate extremism of her young guards and the men in charge of them. She is kept in chains nearly starved, and subjected to unthinkable abuse. She survives by imaging herself in a “house in the sky,” looking down at the woman shackled below, and finding strength and hope in the power of her own mind. Lindhourt’s decision, upon her release, to counter the violence he endured by founding an organization to help the Somali people rebuild their country through education is a wrenching testament to the capacity of the human spirit and an astonishing portrait of the power of compassion and forgiveness. My Review: If you read the above ‘Story Description’ you’ll have an exact idea of what this wonderful memoir is about. I only want to add that Amanda Lindhout has to be one of the most courageous women I’ve read about in a long time. The unspeakable abuse she endured day after day for fifteen long months is truly harrowing. To be trussed up like an animal and suspended from a ceiling for forty-eight hours at a time is totally unfathomable to me but she somehow survived by escaping to her “house in the sky” where she watched the woman below her being tortured. One of the guards was particularly gruelling in his abuse and punishment and raped her on an almost daily basis and how she ever endured that I’ll never know, regardless of her ‘house in the sky.’ She had to separate her physical self from her emotional self in order to deal with the horrifying things that were happening to her and they were brutish and inhumane in every way conceivable. I cried while reading several passages in this book and my heart went out to this young woman who showed such strength and resilience in the face of such brutality. Although she suffered unbearable abuse and torture, she still had the passion and compassion at the end of this horrendous journey to set up educational help to aid Somalia in reordering their country. It takes a very, very special person to be able to do that. This book affected me on so many levels, emotionally and spiritually mostly. I honestly and sincerely don’t believe I could ever have survived what this young woman did. I would have died in captivity long before the fifteen months was up. Amanda, you are a true testament to what the human body can withstand and a true testament for other woman to show strength and courage in the face of such horrible adversity. I am so very sorry for what happened to you and thank you for having the courage to share your most intimate story with us. I don’t think I’ll ever forget you and your story. Thank you to GoodReads for sending me a copy of this book which I won in their contest. I wouldn’t have wanted to miss this book for the world and will be keeping it as part of my permanent collection.
Date published: 2013-07-08
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Heartbreaking, yet hopeful and Inspirational The Good Stuff I think this is one of the hardest reviews I have ever had to write. How do you critique someones harrowing life story when you have no writing ability, and have not been through anything even closely related. This fiercely strong women has opened her heart and showed her pain and suffering to complete strangers. I don't want to do a disservice to her story with my inadequate words or trite commentary. Please forgive me for my inadequacy and just do yourself a favor and pick up a copy of this harrowing, yet beautifully told book. Amanda, I admire you and at the same time wish I had the power to make the rest of your life blessed to overcome the violence you faced. Your strength of will and of character is to be admired and your courage and ability to forgive is something we should all strive for. You give me hope for the future. I am so sorry when we met that I knew nothing of your past. I would like to go back in time and just hug you - I know that isn't much, but I am not a hugger by nature if that means anything. deeply personal no holds barred Inspirational Couldn't put this down Never a moment of poor me - she speaks frankly about her background and her ordeal, without ever putting blame on anyone Haunting - this book is still with me eventhough I finished it early June Fascinating and informative Inspirational Hope and Forgiveness are the main messages she want to get through to the world Takes what happened to her, and instead of letting it take hold and bring her down, uses it to try to bring around change and to help this from happening to others SPOILER - The chapter dealing with her attempted escape sickens me. However, the sheer courage of one of those involved who tried to help does a least give me a little hope but at the same time breaks my heart for her probable fate This will win awards my friends. The collaboration between Ms Lindhout and Ms Corbett is seamless and perfect The Not So Good Stuff Had to find something to put here - would have liked to know more about Amanda's life since the ordeal Cover is sorta blah (not sure if that will change for finished product) This is hard for me to say, but I have to be honest, whenever I read tales like this it makes me think even more poorly about that part of the world, and this makes me feel horrible. I am the type of person who wants to believe that there is good in everyone. I truly don't understand how someone who believes in a God, can treat a fellow person this way and than think that a God would not only approve, but reward them for it. Favorite Quotes Passages "It was as if we were poise at the edge of a witch's cauldron or sat at the prow of a great ship in the center of an otherworldly ocean. I had seen this place in the magazine, and now we were here, lost in it. It was a small truth affirmed. And it was all I needed to keep going." "The Kuchis reminded me a little bit of the First Nations people back in Canada, independent and unintegrated and pretty much worse off for it." "I made peace with anyone who might ever have been an enemy. I asked forgiveness for every vain or selfish thing I'd done in my life. Inside the house in the sky, all the people I loved sat down for a big holiday meal. I was safe and protected. It was where all the voices that normally tore through my head expressing fear and wishing for death were silent, until there was only one left speaking. It was a calmer, stronger voice, one that to me felt divine. It said, See? You are okay, Amanda. It's only your body that's suffering, and you are not your body. The rest of you is fine." "For one split second, I knew his suffering. It had assembled itself and looped through me in a rush. Its absolute clarity made me gasp. It was anguish, accrued over the brief span of his life. It was rage and helplessness. It was a little. This was the person who was hurting me. His sadness trenched beneath mine." Who Should Shouldn't Read This may be a difficult read for the more sensitive Other than those who are extremely sensitive, you must read this! 5 Dewey s I received this from the charming and fun Felicia at Simon and Schuster - thanks for the heads up Captain Awesome
Date published: 2013-07-01