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A Hope More Powerful than the Sea
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About the Author

Melissa Fleming is Head of Communications and Chief Spokesperson for the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees. Her TED talk on the subject of refugees has been viewed more than 1.3 million times. She writes regularly for the Guardian.

https://go.ted.com/CLTR

Reviews

Melissa Fleming's tale of a young Syrian woman's search for peace and safety is a book written for our times. Fleming captures the unremitting fear, the crushing despair, and the glint of hope for a better life that drive families to risk everything and sail the treacherous seas. On every page, loss and hope tangle. On every page, the human toll of the worst humanitarian crisis of our time is painfully, heartbreakingly brought home. This is an emotional read, at times painful, but it is above all a poignant tribute to hope, to resilience, and to the capacity for grace and generosity that dwells deep in the human heart -- Khaled Hosseini, bestselling author of The Kite Runner
In a few years, when people will look back at our current time of conflicts, dislocation, and displacement, the story of Doaa al-Zamel - and of those she saw die, and of the new life she saved? . . . will stand out as one of its defining narratives -- Bruno Giussani, European director, TED
it should enable us to see beyond the cold weight of the numbers, and into an individual's own warm and vivid story . . . If A Hope More Powerful Than the Sea does push more people into action and solidarity, then it will have done vital work; the most important work, perhaps, that a book can do right now . . . Doaa al-Zamel is both ordinary enough to compel sympathy, and extraordinary enough to be unforgettable -- Natasha Walter * Observer *
Fleming's account is as gripping as it is moving * Financial Times *
Written by an official in the UN's refugee agency, this deeply affecting book recounts the story of a young Syrian, Doaa al Zamel . . . Fleming brings a moral urgency to the narrative. Doaa is now safe in Sweden, but Fleming pointedly asks, 'Why is there no massive resettlement program for Syrians - the victims of the worst war of our times?' * New Yorker *
Fleming deftly illustrates the pain of those who choose to leave Syria . . .[She] recounts their narrative with compassion and without melodrama, and her book is ultimately a story of hope . . . The message is to try to humanize one young woman, to tell her tale so that the migrant crisis does not become a bunch of nameless, faceless people fleeing a war but human beings with families, with needs, and with desires * Newsweek *
Stories like Doaa's, presented in the form of excellent storytelling, thrilling surprises, and powerful characters, do have an impact. This is a must-read book for everyone who is debating the refugee crisis, because it boils the entire war in Syria down to one family, one young woman: Doaa * New York Journal of Books *
[Doaa's] inspiring story is urgently required reading * People *
A Hope More Powerful than the Sea poignantly illuminates some of the reasons why our fellow humans embark on such perilous journeys to reach Europe . . . One can only hope that by sharing Doaa's story, her remarkable courage, Fleming will help people better understand why so many are prepared to risk so much in order to reach relative safety * Times Literary Supplement *

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