Robin de Crespigny's The People Smuggleris the gripping, inspring story of one man's escape from Saddam's Iraq to become 'the Oskar Schindler of Asia'.
When Ali Al Jenabi flees Saddam Hussein's torture chambers, he is forced to leave his family behind in Iraq. What follows is an incredible international odyssey through the shadowy world of fake passports, crowded camps and illegal border crossings, living every day with excruciating uncertainty about what the next will bring. Through betrayal, triumph, misfortune - even romance and heartbreak - Ali is sustained by his fierce love of freedom and family. Continually pushed to the limits of his endurance, eventually he must confront what he has been forced to become.
With enormous power and insight, The People Smugglertells a story of daily heroism, bringing to life the forces that drive so many people to put their lives in unscrupulous hands. At once a non-fiction thriller and a moral maze, this is one man's epic story of trying to find a safe place in the world.
Praise for The People Smuggler
'An astonishing story.'
Sebastian Faulks, New York Times Book Review
'This is a story every Australian should read . . . a complex mixture of love of family and a hard-edged determination to survive in a brutal, unforgiving world.'
Bruce Elder, Sydney Morning Herald
'The adventures makeLes MisUrables look like plain sailing. Unforgettable.'
'The most extraordinary book. It has opened my eyes in a life-changing way.'
'A must-read . . . It's an illuminating tale in the context of the asylum-seeker debate . . . A thriller and an inspirational story.'
Jane Sullivan,Saturday Age
'As gripping as it is chilling.'
Paul Morgan, Australian Book Review
'A story that had to be told.'
'Tight, powerful and extraordinarily well written. A book which glories in the strength, courage and compassion of the human spirit.'
Bruce Haigh, Canberra Times
'While giving us the details of Al Jenabi's plight, the dramatic narrative holds strong . . . Compelling.'
Dianne Dempsey, The Age
'An epic story full of dramatic reversals and cinematic cliff-hangers . . . Ali emerges as an unlikely but true-blue hero- resilient, loyal to his mates and protective of those weaker than himself, canny, resourceful, unafraid of sacrifice, a man of honour.'
JosU Borghino, The Australian
'It's gripping, thrilling, humorous and epic. This book is compulsive reading and a story of our times.'
Helen Crompton, West Australian
'It is an utterly gripping portrait of a man . . . attempting to retain his dignity and humanity.'
Robin de Crespigny has spent three years working with Ali Al Jenabi to write his story. She is a film maker and lives in Sydney. This is her first book.