The Bread of Angels: A Journey to Love and Faith

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Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group, Feb 9, 2010 - Biography & Autobiography - 320 pages
8 Reviews

A riveting memoir about one woman's journey into Syria under the Baathist regime and an unexpected love story between two strangers searching for meaning.
 
When Stephanie Saldaña arrives in Damascus, she is running away from a broken heart and a haunted family history that she has crossed the world to escape. Yet as she moves into a tumbling Ottoman house in the heart of the Old City, she is unprepared for the complex world that awaits her: an ancient capital where Sunni and Shia Muslims, Christians, Alawites, Kurds, and Palestinian and Iraqi refugees share a fragile co-existence.

Soon she is stumbling through the Arabic language, fielding interviews from the secret police, and struggling to make the city her own. But as the political climate darkens and the war in neighboring Iraq threatens to spill over, she flees to an ancient Christian monastery carved into the desert cliffs, where she is forced to confront the life she left behind. Soon she will meet a series of improbable teachers: an iconoclastic Italian priest, a famous female Muslim sheikh, a wounded Iraqi refugee, and Frédéric, a young French novice monk who becomes her best friend.

What follows is a tender story of a woman falling in love: with God, with her own life, with a country on the brink of chaos, and with a man she knows she can never have. Wise, funny, and heartbreaking, The Bread of Angels celebrates the hope that appears even in war, the surprising places we can call home, and the possibility of true love.

 

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - AObenhaus - LibraryThing

It took me a bit to finish this book, as it was not fiction, but a very detailed and flowing memoir. After finishing the book, I wish I went on the journey Stephanie did! I found her story intriguing and her actions brave. Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - clue - LibraryThing

I enjoy both memoirs and travelogues and this book is a combination of both. A divinty student, Saldana went to Damascus on a Fulbright Scholarship in 2004 to study Islam. When she arrived in Syria ... Read full review

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About the author (2010)

Stephanie Saldaña grew up in Texas and received a B. A. from Middlebury College and a master’s degree from Harvard Divinity School. She was a Watson and Fulbright scholar and has won several awards for her poetry. She lives in Jerusalem and teaches at the Honors College for Liberal Arts and Sciences, a partnership of Bard College and Al-Quds University.




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