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The Dressmaker of Khair Khana Audiobook

The Dressmaker of Khair Khana: Five Sisters, One Remarkable Family, and the Woman Who Risked Everything to Keep Them Safe

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Publisher's Summary

The life Kamila Sidiqi had known changed overnight when the Taliban seized control of the city of Kabul. After receiving a teaching degree during the civil war - a rare achievement for any Afghan woman - Kamila was subsequently banned from school and confined to her home. When her father and brother were forced to flee the city, Kamila became the sole breadwinner for her five siblings. Armed only with grit and determination, she picked up a needle and thread and created a thriving business of her own.

The Dressmaker of Khair Khana tells the incredible true story of this unlikely entrepreneur who mobilized her community under the Taliban. Former ABC Newsreporter Gayle Tzemach Lemmon spent years on the ground reporting Kamila's story, and the result is an unusually intimate and unsanitized look at the daily lives of women in Afghanistan. These women are not victims; they are the glue that holds families together; they are the backbone and the heart of their nation.

Afghanistan's future remains uncertain as debates over withdrawal timelines dominate the news. The Dressmaker of Khair Khana moves beyond the headlines to transport you to an Afghanistan you have never seen before. This is a story of war, but it is also a story of sisterhood and resilience in the face of despair. Kamila Sidiqi's journey will inspire you, but it will also change the way you think about one of the most important political and humanitarian issues of our time.

©2011 Gayle Tzemach Lemmon (P)2011 HarperCollins Publishers

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.0 (315 )
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4.2 (253 )
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Performance
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  •  
    Carmen Chile 01-06-13
    Carmen Chile 01-06-13 Member Since 2016
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Admirable"

    Bravo! You may feel so proud of being a female, just learning from this wonderfull example

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Joy Lee Colo. Spgs 10-31-12
    Joy Lee Colo. Spgs 10-31-12

    JLH

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    "Nice to learn more"
    Would you listen to The Dressmaker of Khair Khana again? Why?

    This was a wonderful book that helped me learn about another part of the world that helped me to understand the culture better. What a brave young woman!!


    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Joyce 10-29-12
    Joyce 10-29-12 Member Since 2012
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    "Heroic!"
    What did you love best about The Dressmaker of Khair Khana?

    I loved how the story moved along, kinda kept me on the edge of my seat.


    What did you like best about this story?

    How it showed the strength and cunning of these women.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    It was a story I wanted to stretch out longer.


    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Vera Sao Paulo, Brazil 10-29-12
    Vera Sao Paulo, Brazil 10-29-12
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    "Excelent!"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    I recommend to all my friends. It's a beatiful story everyone must know.


    What does Sarah Zimmerman bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    The interpretation was great.


    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    valerie 07-26-12
    valerie 07-26-12 Member Since 2011

    I listen to books all the time, When I am driving, cleaning, cooking or doing anything quiet. I am AUDOBSESSED!

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    "The injustice of the Taliban"

    Very good story about this family and how they adjust to the reign of the Taliban in their once very civilized society. It just makes me sick to learn about the idiotic thought process of the Taliban

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Bonnie 09-01-12
    Bonnie 09-01-12 Member Since 2011
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    "Highly recommend - good story and educational"

    Read this book if you want to understand Afghanistan, its history, the people and the Taliban. I had no idea about any of this except that the Taliban are extremist. I had no idea how the Taliban came to be so fundamental until this book. This was explained in the first few chapters and sets the stage for this true story of Kamela Sediqi who became the dressmaker of Khair Khana.

    When the Taliban first came to Kabul, Kamela had just finished at the University and had hoped to get a job teaching. Her hopes were quickly dashed when the Taliban decreed that women were to stay at home, obtain no jobs, not leave the house without being fully covered and having a male chaperone, and other rules which seemed to change daily. They also roamed the streets like common thugs looking for the slightest reason to beat women, even the elderly. Women went from a world of hope to one of despair.

    This is the very powerful biography of a young woman who changed what she could by starting her own secret business in her home and in so doing provided an income and hope for her family and the families of many others.

    The only thing that I would have changed were the voices of the various characters. The reader gave them no individuality. All voices, both men and women, sounded alike. It was sometimes difficult to tell the women apart because of this.

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Alana Mardi, Australia 03-28-12
    Alana Mardi, Australia 03-28-12
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    "I was hooked from the first 5mins"
    What made the experience of listening to The Dressmaker of Khair Khana the most enjoyable?

    I enjoy hearing about the life these girls had to lead and how they found a way to live withing the endless rules that had been placed on them...it was good to hear triumph over the odds.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Kamila, the way she approaches things and deals with what comes to her is wonderful.


    What does Sarah Zimmerman bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    I find the readers voice entrancing and she keeps you focused on the story and you want to hear more.


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    I laughed and cried through the book, the girls had their moments but the descriptions of what happed to some was heartbreaking for me and unlike who told the story I wasn't there so imagine how they felt.


    Any additional comments?

    It is well worth a listen I found the whole thing uplifting so now if I think I am having a tough time I just remember what they lived through and I can see I am not really doing it tough.

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amazon Customer 09-04-16
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    "beautiful!"

    The story was easy to follow and could understand clearly. I was just doing this for summer reading but I really enjoyed the book.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Compute 05-04-15
    Compute 05-04-15 Member Since 2014
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    "A must read for each of us"

    What a fantastic book! Reading books of this type always make me thankful to be an American and live in the USA. We have so much to be thankful for. The author did an outstanding job of telling the story of Kamila Sidiqi and her family and their survival in Afghanistan. This young lady is a true hero in today's world. She rose above her circumstances and became a victor in life instead of being oppressed, downtrodden and giving in to those oppressing her. Yes, her life was hard, but she has the attitude and faces life with the resiliency that each of us should have. As I read this I thought about our country. Yes, we have our problems, but we have the best country ever and we need to very carefully protect her and our freedoms.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Lois 08-25-13
    Lois 08-25-13 Member Since 2015
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    "A Remarkable Woman"

    An amazing account of triumph over adversity. Kamila Sidiqi realises that in a household of women - the men having left for their own safety - she had to do something to support her sisters. Living in Khair Khana where the Taliban were in control, and life for women was severely restricted, she learnt to sew, and established a thriving dressmaking business. Her youngest brother was the only male in the establishment, and she relied on him to escort her whenever she ventured outdoors to market her wares, or purchase fresh material.Her enterprise and great courage are amazing, as she eventually supplied work for many of her neighbours, enabling them to earn sufficient to live on There is a lot more to be written about this brave lady - I do hope a sequel is considered.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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