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The Tears of a Man Flow Inward

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The Tears of a Man Flow Inward by Pacifique Irankunda
Hardcover $27.00
Mar 29, 2022 | ISBN 9780812997644

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Praise

“In this moving memoir, Irankunda recalls living through a 13-year civil war that upended his life in Burundi when he was only 4 years old and contemplates the loss of his country’s culture and tradition to the violence.”—The New York Times

“There’s nothing like a great love song, and Pacifique Irankunda sings a beautiful one here to his homeland and to all those who choose love even in the bleakest of times.”—Imbolo Mbue, author of Behold the Dreamers and How Beautiful We Were

“This short memoir, of a boy’s life in a far-off and magical but harshly violent world—and of a young man’s struggle to make sense of it—is sometimes shocking, often moving, and always fascinating. Pacifique Irankunda’s book is hard to put down and impossible to forget.”—Evan Thomas, author of First: Sandra Day O’Connor 

“Pacifique Irankunda tells a story of suffering and cruelty that nevertheless has hope and wisdom running through it.”—Margaret MacMillan, author of War: How Conflict Shaped Us

“Civil wars bring out the worst in us, for they set neighbors and friends against one another. Yet from a childhood lived in that terrible shadow, Pacifique Irankunda has brought forth a finely wrought memoir and a moving meditation on wisdom and justice.” —Adam Hochschild, author of King Leopold’s Ghost and To End All Wars

“Pacifique Irankunda has written a lucid and deeply personal history of Burundi’s brutal colonization and the thirteen-year civil war of which he is a survivor. But for Burundi and Burundians, Irankunda wants more than survival. Drawing on ancient teachings and traditions and on his mother’s extraordinary generosity, his vision for the future is a revelation and a rallying cry we would all, wherever we come from, do well to heed.”—Nadia Owusu, author of Aftershocks 

“Unsparing, unsentimental, and as sweet as nectar, this account of conflict in Burundi is offered by a witness who was only a few years old when it began. This memoir of exceptional potency includes as many luminous recollections as painful ones, but the steady example of a visionary mother shines most brightly of all. ‘If you have no love,’ she told her sons during the long strife, ‘you’re nobody.’ This taut volume may take only a quiet afternoon or two to read, but it will haunt you, I’ll wager, for long years to come.”Paul Farmer, chair of the Department of Global Health and Social Medicine at Harvard Medical School

“In this elegant debut, Irankunda recounts how he survived the 13-year civil war that defined his childhood. Irankunda was four in 1993 when he and his family, members of the Tutsi minority, were swept up in the ethnic war that dominated Burundi following the assassination of the nation’s Hutu president. . . . [Irankunda has written] a stunning tribute to his land and its people . . . awn intelligent and immensely moving story of resilience.”—Publishers Weekly

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