About the Book
Sanja Kulenovic and her new husband were celebrating their honeymoon in Pasadena, California, in 1992 when they turned on CNN to discover their hometown, Sarajevo, being devastated by bombing. As the nation of Yugoslavia collapsed, Sanja and her husband became people without a country, but their primary concern was their family and loved ones back home. How were they doing? What was happening to them as the city was sieged? Would they survive?
Sanja recounts her and her husband’s efforts to build a new life as refugees in Southern California, finding joy in securing a pizza-delivery job and receiving letters or brief phone calls from Sarajevo. Those letters—often written in darkness as bombs fell and gunfire rang out—vividly capture the suffering Sanja’s family and other Sarajevans endured through almost four years of daily bombardments, the perpetual threat of sniper fire, and three frozen, foodless winters.
The Siege of Sarajevo illustrates the human toll of war and the highly personal consequences of what often seem like faraway conflicts. The book is also a tribute to the resilience of the human spirit, reminding readers that they—like Sanja and her family—are stronger than they ever imagined.
Endorsements and Reviews
“In a world facing the worst refugee crisis in history, this is an important and timely book, a compelling reminder of the heartrending dilemma of escaping terrible violence and leaving loved ones behind. Remarkably, the book is written entirely by Bosnian refugees and their families, and captures the Sarajevo experience better than anything else I’ve ever seen.”
“(This) is an epic tale, and we can all learn a lot from it. This story of the Kulenovic family is written so engagingly that you feel you’re one of them. It is moving beyond words.”
“A powerful, well-written account of a loving family torn apart by one of the longest sieges in modern history. Compelling and heartbreaking story but ultimately a testament to human spirit, kindness and resilience.”
“By reading personal letters sent from Sarajevo during the siege, you become part of the story, too. … The raw account and description of the events is striking, explosive, and often reads as a movie screenplay, forcing you to turn page after page, letter after letter–as you become Sarajevan yourself.”
“A gripping, vivid, and vital reflection on a too often forgotten bit of very recent history. … Sanja’s story is at once sickening and beautiful, horrifying yet hopeful. In times such as these, we need stories like this.”
This book is a brave effort to uncover the dark history of Sarajevo and unravel memories often best kept buried. Its strength lies in bringing two stories, occurring worlds apart, together. … The Siege of Sarajevo shows, with each page, that some of the best war stories are written by refugees.
“Sanja Kulenovic’s gripping account is both a universal human story of one family’s implacable resolve to retain its dignity in the face of war’s horrors and an invaluable historical source documenting the terror experienced by civilians during the Sarajevo siege. Drawing upon authentic voices of siege survivors as preserved in correspondence, memoirs, and her personal recollections, Kulenovic skillfully juxtaposes the four years of terror her family and friends suffered in Sarajevo with her own saga of dogged determination to reunite with them.”
About the Author
Ordering Information for Bookstores and Libraries
The Siege of Sarajevo: One Family’s Story of Separation, Struggle, and Strength
$16.95 ISBN 978-1-7335462-0-1 (paperback)
BIOGRAPHY & AUTOBIOGRAPHY / Personal Memoirs
BIOGRAPHY & AUTOBIOGRAPHY / Women
Please call 937-483-4204 for special pricing and shipping information for bulk orders.
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