Great cultural novel

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It took me about 100 pages to get into this story, but once I did, I was sucked in. The beginning you are really getting to know the three women. Once their stories start to align into one path is when it gets good. I loved that they all had their own plans and agendas, but in the end, they just wanted to keep themselves and their families safe. This was an interesting look into Saddam Hussein’s Baghdad, without getting too political or detailed. The women may not all have been deep into the politics, but they were all affected. While a slow burn in the beginning, there’s a bang of excitement towards the end. Make sure to read the author’s note at the end. She had interesting commentary on diversity and experiences in writing.

“Whether a love match or arranged the traditional way, it didn’t matter how well the bride knew the groom on the wedding day. Husbands could change so much; even a wife of sixteen years could suddenly find herself married to a stranger.”