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Shadow Behind The Sun: Flight from Kosovo: A Woman's Story (Non-Fiction)

Shadow Behind The Sun: Flight from Kosovo: A Woman's Story (Non-Fiction) [Kindle Edition]

Remzija Sherifi
3.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (15 customer reviews)

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Product Description


Shadow Behind the Sun is published by the Highland based publisher Sandstone Press. It is an enthralling read. The refugees lack of a voice means that not only is their experience in the UK largely unheard and misunderstood. The experiences which drove them to come here are also lost to most of us. Remzije Sherifi devotes large sections of Shadow Behind the Sun to her life and work with other immigrants in Scotland. But the most moving and intriguing sections of her well-written and carefully assembled story deal with this former journalist s life as an Albanian woman in Yugoslavia and then, unluckily, in Greater Serbia. --Roger Hutchison in The Scotsman

DARK horrors lurk behind Remzije Sherifi s bright smile. Sitting behind her desk at the Maryhill Integration Network in Glasgow she exudes happiness and optimism despite the fact the memory of all she has lost is with her every day. Remzije grew up in Gjilan in the south-east of Kosovo. She completed an HND in electrical engineering and education in Prishtina before training as a radio journalist. She worked hard to make her way in the industry, eventually becoming editor of Radio Gjilan. However, during the 1990s Remzije had her job taken away from her as Serbia attempted to suppress thousands of ethnic Albanians living in Kosovo. It was a huge blow, but there was more trouble looming. In the late 1990s, forces under Yugoslav President Slobodan Milosevic attempted to overpower the Albanian majority s campaign for independence. A conflict followed, during which time Serbian forces carried out a campaign of ethnic cleansing. Serbian tanks Hundreds of thousands of refugees fled to Albania, Macedonia and Montenegro. Among them were Remzije and her family. --Sunday Post

Shadow Behind The Sun is perhaps the first substantial book to emerge from the wave of new Scots who have arrived here in the last decade from war zones across the world - from Iraq and Afghanistan. from Sudan and Zimbabwe, and of course from former Yugoslavia, in this case from Kosova. In this book, written with the help of Robert Davidson of Sandstone Press, Remzije Sherifi intercuts her story of the conflict in Kosova - the history of the region, the conflict which developed in the 1990 s, and the reasons why she and her family finally had to leave - with her experiences today, working as an adviser to other refugees and asylum seekers in a drop-in centre in Glasgow. And between these two poles of experience, she produces a remarkable memoir. It s an angry book, but also a profoundly thoughtful one about the way in which this kind of ethnic conflict can flare up within months, or a few short years, in what previously seemed a peaceful and harmonious society, and about her experience of working with others who have faced similar crises. Sherifi is a woman younger than me, who has already seen more suffering and trauma than anyone should have to see in a lifetime. But she is still learning, growing and changing here in Scotland, building a new life which is not the same as the old one, but which still brings new challenges and fulfilments. And while there is never any room for complacency on these issues, I think that s something in which we can take some small amount of pride. --Joyce McMillan at the Saltire Society Awards

Product Description


Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 417 KB
  • Print Length: 258 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 1905207131
  • Publisher: Sandstone Press (15 May 2007)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00422KWZU
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Average Customer Review: 3.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (15 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #133,492 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
17 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Anyone who starts this book will surely finish 26 Mar 2013
By Deep Reader VINE VOICE
Format:Kindle Edition
When this book first appeared it excited two page spreads across all the Scottish press and was short listed for two major awards: The Saltire Society and Scottish Arts Council first book prizes. In the opinions of many it should have enjoyed UK success. Remzije Sherifi is a Kosovar woman who now resides in Glasgow and works with the Maryhill Integration Network. Her story illuminates many other stories though. Born in Pristina in what was then Yugoslavia, she became a radio journalist in Gjilan and continued working as such until Serbian persecution made her unemployed and threatened her own life and those of her loved ones. In an unputdownable narrative, she paints the background to the atrocities and the terrible effect on her own and her extended family. Fleeing for their lives they found their way first to the camps at Stankovic in Macedonia, later on the first refugee flight to Glasgow where she remains. Of as great interest as the Kosovo passages are her descriptions of her work with asylum seekers and refugees. The story of the destruction of her home and the near loss of one of her sons had me on the edge of my seat. As did the journey into Serbia for medical treatment. The 'Parliament of the Dispossessed' passage is very beautiful although hugely tragic. Refugees are straws in the wind of world politics and, if we listen, they speak of what is coming our way in time. Anyone who starts this book will surely finish. It really is not to be missed.
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19 of 20 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars gripping 3 July 2007
This is a riveting and illuminating book. The author is an Albanian Kosovar who lived through a long period of persecution by what was supposed to be her own government. This culminated in the atrocities and flight we all saw on television. Before that there was the longer context of steady clearance of Albanians southward, by Serbians, from the region for over a hundred years. Over the decade before, of course, the forces of Greater Serbia had been exerting themselves all across the region.

For all of this Remzije Sherifi maintains a forgiving spirit and constructive outlook. Reading her book you feel she longs to return to her homeland to help with the rebuilding, only health prevents her. She is a cancer survivor.

Now she works with asylum seekers in Britain and, with her colleagues,

obviously does a tremendous job for understanding and tolerance in almost

impossible circumstances. We need more like her in this country. The Chief

Executive of the Scottish Refugee Council has been quoted as saying 'this

book should be compulsory reading for all politicians'. The Scottish Review of Books says it should be distributed to all readers of the Daily Mail. It clears away all the misleading hype that surrounds the asylum seeker issue and brings the individuals and their families forward as normal human beings in extraordinary circumstances.

It is also a totally gripping read.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars refugees are not just statistical data 3 April 2013
By coozleh
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
This book has been the best introduction to asylum seekers and refugees I could have had. A personal story of a successful migrant woman who had to leave her country so protect her family from genocide has affected my thoughts and dreams deeply.
The book greatly describes the constant fear and insecurity that ordinary people felt when civil war was approaching their villages and towns.
The destruction and the consequences of civil war described in the book warn against extreme nationalism that in this instance progressed into direct discrimination and criminal activities. All in the name of justice.
Citizenship entitlement right is touched upon in two different ways: one as a minority Albanian Kosovars and the other as a refugee migrant status in the UK.
The book gives a human face to refugee and asylum seeker 'cases' and clearly states that behind every statistical data there is a real sad story that deserves to be told and listen to with respect.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Tiggerificbex 3 Jan 2014
Interesting book giving an insight into the Kosovo conflict and resources (or the lack of) for refugees in the UK. Not the most flowing or gripping prose but a good read all the same!
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3.0 out of 5 stars An opportunity lost 22 July 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I don't know what to make of this book, was it a story about the Kosovan civil war or asylum seekers in Glasgow? Bit of both I guess. The story promised a lot but delivered a lot less as the book presented little in detail, maybe I expected too much? The story revolves around the life if the author and her experiences as an asylum seeker in Glasgow. Both stories are presented from a very personal subjective angle set with occasional mentions of geopolitical context. There are details missing, like the relationship between Kosovo, Albania and Macedonia as all three are ethnic Kosovons. Do the people want a united Albania instead if three independent governments for instance? The book could have done a much better job of presenting Kosovo to the world, opportunity lost.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Impressive but heavy 20 July 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
A deeply touching account of a woman's life impacted by civil war, very very interesting but quite a heavy read. I had to read this in small chunks over a long time.
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3.0 out of 5 stars MAN'S INHUMANITY TO MAN 25 Jun 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
A dark, well-written account of late 20th century oppression. It's a challenging read, but a document not to be ignored.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
1.0 out of 5 stars boring
this book is one of the most boring i have ever read, i have nothing good to say about it
Published 12 months ago by Deborah Smith
2.0 out of 5 stars Disappointed
I came to this story with scant understanding of the tragedy which was Kosova. After reading this book I left not knowing much more. Read more
Published 13 months ago by Susan Mason
5.0 out of 5 stars a real good read
I would recomend this book its was very interesting a good insight into the lives of the protagonists it made me sad aswll
Published 13 months ago by julia berkolds
5.0 out of 5 stars Should be compulsory reading in schools and for politicians
Reading this book and being very aware of my own ignorance of what had happened in Kosova and my own tendency to switch off during the news when I hear about the persecution in... Read more
Published 14 months ago by Peter Lloyd
2.0 out of 5 stars sStilted
Although this was an interesting book, it was written in a very stilted way - consequently you never really felt deeply about the people in the book, altho the events were truly... Read more
Published 14 months ago by izzy
3.0 out of 5 stars Great story, didn't like how it was put together
I found this book very interesting and easy to read, however it jumps forwards and backwards in time with each chapter. Read more
Published 14 months ago by Sarah, Lanarkshire
4.0 out of 5 stars Buy it, then look at your immigrant neighbour with new eyes
Interesting story, to put it mildly!
I have given it 4 stars as, although fairly well written, I found it a little formulaic with it's swapping every chapter between now and... Read more
Published 14 months ago by E J AMOS
1.0 out of 5 stars kindle won't work
How can i do anything as the kindle will not connect with the computer and so far i have have not found a telephone number to speak to anyone.
Published 14 months ago by G. M. Carley
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The sample doesn't includ any of the book! 0 22 Apr 2013
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