Wendell Steavenson, author of the acclaimed memoir STORIES I STOLE, has lived in and reported from post-Soviet Georgia, Afghanistan, Iran, Iraq, and Lebanon. Her work has appeared in the London Observer, The New Yorker, Time, and other publications. Her first book of non-fiction, CIRCLING THE SQUARE: STORIES FROM THE EGYPTIAN REVOLUTION was published by Granta in 2015. She lives in Paris.
Wendell's last novel, PARIS METRO: A NOVEL, was published by W. W. Norton & Company in March 2018.
Wendell Steavenson, who had lived in the Middle East for more than a decade, watched on TV from Jerusalem as the crowds massed in Tunis and then in Cairo. She felt a tug in her gut. When editors called and asked if she’d fly there to cover the events, she did, of course, say yes. By turns memoir and reportage, travelogue and musing, Steavenson’s chronicle is a mosaic of the Egyptian Revolution from Mubarak’s fall to Morsi’s, made from the mortar of life that’s found between the news blocks.
W. W. Norton & Company
From the American invasion of Iraq in 2003 to the terrorist attacks in Paris in 2015, Paris Metro is a story of East meets West. Kit, a reporter, has spent several years after 9/11 living in the Middle East, working as a correspondent for an American newspaper. Moving between war-torn Baghdad, riots in Beirut, Syria during the Arab Spring, and Greece in the midst of a refugee crisis, she befriends insurgents, fundamentalists and soldiers, diplomats, middlemen, and monks, determined to understand and tell their story. Along the way she falls in love and marries a charismatic Iraqi diplomat named Ahmed, before their separation leaves Kit raising their teenage son alone in Paris. But after the Charlie Hebdo attack occurs and, a few months later, terrorists storm the Bataclan, Kit's core beliefs are shattered. The violence she had spent years covering abroad is now on her doorstep. What is the point of truth and tolerance when everything is blowing up around you? As Kit struggles with her grief and confusion, she begins to mistrust those closest to her: her friends, her husband, even her own son. Paris Metro is a taut and propulsive story of two cultures colliding under the same roof; of love, betrayal, and misunderstandings within families; and of the universal quest to find home.
The Weight of a Mustard Seed: The Intimate Story of an Iraqi General and His Family During Thirty Years of Tyranny
An intimate account of Iraqi life under Saddam Hussein's regime, written from the perspective of one of his loyal generals, describes Kamael Sachet's regret over his role in Hussein's terror regime, his refusal to let his sons join the military, and his relationships with such associates as the head of the Republican Guard and a director of Abu Ghraib prison.