Against the backdrop of mounting political tensions in Kabul, Enjeela’s family is separated when her mother leaves for a medical procedure in New Delhi, taking two of Enjeela’s sisters with her. As the civil war intensifies, and with Enjeela’s brother evading capture by the secret police, her family left in Kabul is targeted for harassment. Her father, growing fearful for the four children still under his roof, makes the decision to attempt to join his wife in India. The Broken Circle is Enjeela’s story of escape, endurance, determination, and pluck as she and three of her siblings flee the war in Afghanistan and embark on a five-year journey, traveling by taxi, bus, car, donkey, and foot across South Asia to reunite with her mother and sisters.
Told from the point of view of a child, this memoir stands out as one of few that have been written about the experiences of living during the time of Afghanistan’s nascent development as a modern country. Today, some in the Western world might think of Kabul as a backward warren of intolerance, corruption, poverty, and cruelty. In Enjeela’s heart and mind, though, Afghanistan was home—a place that worked for all its people, where children climbed trees and families gathered around the table at dinner to laugh and share.
- Erin Calligan Mooney, Editor