As a way of introducing ENTANGLED HOPES OF GLORY, the next few entries in my blog will include snippets from the book. The below excerpt takes place early in the story and is set in the city of Tunis, the capital of Tunisia. A pregnant woman is just trying to get on with her day, but this day isn't like most other days...
"Ignoring the constant bickering between her five daughters and two sons, a woman dressed in a grey hijab and bland, ankle-length black robe, stood in front of the cramped kitchen's sink, washing the mound of chipped bowls and cracked plates used at breakfast - her eighth child weighing heavy inside her belly.
The woman's name didn't matter. She was just one more faceless/nameless woman caught up in the violence of what had always been, and what would always be. If Allah was kind, her husband would come home to her that evening. If Allah had a different destiny for him, then she and her children would starve. Tehran and its powerful Ayatollahs would not give her, or her family, a second thought.
A stabbing cramp forced her to double over across the tiny countertop. It had been five minutes since the last one - they were coming quicker now. She took a deep breath and leaned back, hands on her hips, supporting her lower back. She should probably call her sister soon - it looked like she was going to need her."
Iran - through Hezbollah - had recruited the woman's husband for a suicide mission in the name of Islam; a mission he willingly agreed to accept. This begs the question of why he made the choice he made, especially when his family depended on him for their very survival. While bad personal choices can be made for many reasons including the pursuit of money, fame, and/or power, in this case, it was due to a fanatical form of faith that was exploited by others.
The issue of personal choice is a key theme that runs throughout ENTANGLED HOPES OF GLORY where nothing less than the survival of nations often lay in the balance.