Thursday, November 7, 2019

Book Tour, Excerpt & Giveaway: The Heart of Aleppo: A Story of the Syrian Civil War by Ammar Habib

On Tour with Prism Book Tours

The Heart of Aleppo:
A Story of the Syrian Civil War
By Ammar Habib
YA Contemporary
Paperback & ebook, 252 Pages
July 26th 2018

Winner of the 2019 Independent Press Award
#1 Bestseller in "Coming-Of-Age" Fiction
#1 Bestseller in "Asian-American" Literature

From the ashes of the Syrian Civil War comes this story of hope, love, and courage...

After standing for over 7,000 years, Aleppo's ruin came overnight. Separated from his family during the night the rebels attacked the city, thirteen-year-old Zaid Kadir is lost in the middle of a war zone. Alongside his friends, he is forced to survive the dangers of a civil war he does not even fully understand. Zaid witnesses the destruction of the brutal Syrian Civil War as it grows more deadly by the day and rips his city apart. However, as he braves this destruction, as he desperately tries to survive this catastrophe, he discovers something. Zaid realizes that it is in the darkest hours when humanity's spirit of hope burns brightest.

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Each street we come on to is the same as the previous one: buildings have been turned to ashes, vehicles are blown to bits, wreckage is everywhere, and the innocent have suffered. I do what Salman ordered: look straight ahead and ignore any corpses. Don’t even glance at them. They’re on every street, nearly littering some roads. I see them in my peripheral vision. Sometimes, a fire is reflecting off of them. Other times, it’s just their silhouettes. I try to make avoiding them into a game. But my mind is too aware of the reality to do that. I think Salman purposely goes around as many as he can so that we don’t walk over them.
The foul stench of carnage is strong on nearly every street. The vile odor follows us no matter where we go. If I had any food in my stomach, I would have thrown it up long ago. Every half hour, we see somebody cut through the fog and appear into view. Sometimes it’s a traveling group. Other times, it’s a person sleeping in an alley or sitting with their head in their hands. Hardly any of them give us a glance.
Every step is harder than the last. My feet become weighted stones. I almost can’t feel the uneven and cracked concrete underneath me. It’s as if I’m moving in a trance. I don’t know where I am or where I’m going. I’m simply walking through the abyss and listening to the only sound: my soft footsteps.
The longer we travel and the heavier my sack becomes, the more a fear grips me. The fear that we don’t know if we’re fleeing danger or walking into a den of hungry wolves. The fear that by the time we do reach home, what happened to Jari may have already happened to everyone. 
We keep moving. We stay on the side of the road. Every once in a while, we climb over or go under some debris. Salman and Fatima don’t slow down a bit. I don’t know how long it’s been. However, after a while, I start having a hard time keeping up with them. It must be at least two hours before my feet begin feeling numb. And another half hour before I completely lose sensation in them. They’re so tired now that it hurts just to take another step. But Salman and Fatima don’t stop or complain and neither do I.

About the Author

Ammar Habib is a bestselling and award-winning author who was born in Lake Jackson, Texas in 1993. Ammar enjoys crafting stories that are not only entertaining but will also stay with the reader for a long time. Ammar presently resides in his hometown with his family, all of whom are his biggest fans. He draws his inspiration from his family, imagination, and the world around him.

Tour Schedule

Tour Giveaway

One winner will receive a signed copy of Habib's national award-winning novel, Memories of My Future (US only). Memories of My Future is an historical/inspirational novel that was published in 2016. It received several accolades after its release, including the Independent Press Award in May 2017.

Ends November 13, 2019

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