by Waris Dirie
Editor: Little, Brown Book Group
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Waris Dirie (the name means flower of the desert) a double life – per day, she is a famous model and spokesperson for the UN on women’s rights in Africa, at night, she dreams of her native country, Somalia.Waris, one of 12 children, was born into a traditional desert nomadic family in East Africa.She remembers her carefree childhood as camel racing and moving on with her family to the next spot pasture – until it came in turn to respond to the old woman who administered the old custom imposed on most Somali girls: circumcision.Waris suffered this torture when she was five years old.Then, at the age of 12, when her father tried to arrange a marriage with an unknown 60-year-old in exchange for five camels – she flew away.After an extraordinary escape through the dangerous desert, she made her way to London and worked as a maid for the Somali ambassador until the family returned home.Without the penny and speaking a little English, she became a concierge in a Mcdo where she was famous discovered by a fashion photographer.Her story is a true source of inspiration and extraordinary self-portrait of a remarkable woman, whose spirit is as breathtaking as its beauty.
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