Author(s): Ilene Prusher
Nabil al-Amari is an English teacher in Baghdad, in Saddam's Iraq, when a chance encounter with Samara Katchens, an American journalist covering the war, changes his life forever. It is April 2003 and American and British forces have recently invaded Iraq. Samara, or Sam for short, is ambitious, cynical and determined. Nabil is both fascinated and bewildered by her, and he's keen to show her things she doesn't notice in her rush to cover the news. She is pushed by her editor to seek concrete proof for a story concerning payments for false documents - a practice which breaks all journalistic codes of ethics - "as if truth were so hard in that way, like rocks and concrete". In Iraq it is rarely so. As Sam single-mindedly pursues this story, she discovers a chasm between her editor's expectations and the reality she faces in a city torn apart by war and conflicting loyalties. And in her determination to uncover the truth, she takes one gamble too many, endangering herself, Nabil and his family.
"A fast-paced, evocative thriller that opens our eyes to the excitements and dangers of Iraq after the fall of Saddam. This gripping, beautifully-observed tale, written with a ring of true authenticity, captures the challenges of a journalist and her loyal fixer navigating their way through an Iraq rarely seen by outsiders." Rory McCarthy, Guardian Correspondent and author of 'Nobody Told Us We Are Defeated: Stories from the New Iraq' "A unique novel, Baghdad Fixer's compelling plot is combined with poignant and difficult insights into the life and tragedies of ordinary Iraqis during the war. This is not just a wonderful read, it is an important book for helping us, too, to begin to understand the Other." Tania Hershman, author of 'My Mother Was An Upright Piano' and 'The White Road and Other Stories'
Ilene Prusher was a staff writer for The Christian Science Monitor from 2000 to 2010, serving as bureau chief in Tokyo, Istanbul, and Jerusalem and covering the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. She is now an independent journalist based in Jerusalem, and also teaches Reporting Conflict for NYU-Tel Aviv. After graduating from the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism in 1993, Ilene started her career as a reporter at The Philadelphia Inquirer, later freelancing from the Middle East for Newsday, The New Republic, The Financial Times, The Guardian and The Observer. Raised in New York, she now lives in Jerusalem with her husband and two children. Baghdad Fixer is her first novel.