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This title in other editions

Captive: My Time as a Prisoner of the Taliban

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Captive: My Time as a Prisoner of the Taliban Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

An American reporter's chilling account of being kidnapped and imprisoned by the Taliban, in the no-man's-land between Afghanistan and Pakistan

Jere Van Dyk was on the wrong side of the border. He and three Afghan guides had crossed into the tribal areas of Pakistan, where no Westerner had ventured for years, hoping to reach the home of a local chieftain by nightfall. But then a dozen armed men in black turbans appeared over the crest of a hill.

Captive is Van Dyk's searing account of his forty-five days in a Taliban prison, and it is gripping and terrifying in the tradition of the best prison literature. The main action takes place in a single room, cut off from the outside world, where Van Dyk feels he can trust nobody—not his jailers, not his guides (who he fears may have betrayed him), and certainly not the charismatic Taliban leader whose fleeting appearances carry the hope of redemption as well as the prospect of immediate, violent death.

Van Dyk went to the tribal areas to investigate the challenges facing America there. His story is of a deeper, more personal challenge, an unforgettable tale of human endurance.

Jere Van Dyk is the author of In Afghanistan: An American Odyssey, an account of his travels with the mujahideen in the 1980s, during their struggle against the Soviet Union. Since then, he has covered stories all over the world, mainly for The New York Times, CBS News, and National Geographic, that have required him to visit places where few Western reporters had ventured before. He lives in New York City.

Jere Van Dyk was on the wrong side of the border. The American reporter and three Afghan guides had crossed into the tribal areas of Pakistan, where no Westerner had ventured for years, hoping to reach the home of a local chieftain by nightfall. But then a dozen armed men in black turbans appeared over the crest of a hill.

Captive is Van Dyk's gripping account of his forty-five days in a Taliban prison. The main action takes place in a single room, cut off from the outside world, where Van Dyk feels he can trust nobody—not his jailers, not his guides (who he fears may have betrayed him), and certainly not the charismatic Taliban leader whose fleeting appearances carry the hope of redemption as well as the prospect of immediate, violent death.

Van Dyk went to the tribal areas to investigate the challenges facing America there. His story is of a deeper, more personal challenge, an unforgettable tale of human endurance.

“A vivid portrait of a man under stress and pressure, producing the equivalent of wars high tension and terror . . . Some of [Van Dyks] passages inevitably will become part of the canon.”—The Boston Globe

“If you want to read an amazing book, check out Captive, by Jere Van Dyk . . . What this reporter lived through is, I think, pretty much the most frightening thing a journalist could be subjected to. He wrote a phenomenal book about it that I consumed in about a day. Please read it.”—Sebastian Junger, author of War

“A harrowing survival story.”—Kirkus Reviews

"An American journalist exploring the war zone on the Afghanistan-Pakistan border reports unwanted lessons in its perils in this harrowing memoir. Having traveled with the 'freedom fighters' in the '80s, Van Dyk thought he had the connections and knowledge to navigate the tribal lands between Pakistan and Afghanistan, but he was captured by a fractious band of Taliban fighters in 2008. Van Dyk (In Afghanistan: An American Odyssey) and his Afghan guides spent 44 days in a dark cell. Well-fed but terrified, he felt a nightmare of helplessness and disorientation. Dependent on a jailer who mixed solicitude with jocular death threats and a ruthless Taliban commander who could free or kill him on a whim, the author performed Muslim prayers in an attempt to appease his captors; wary of murky conspiracies involving his cellmates, he 'was afraid of everybody, including the children.' Van Dyk's claustrophobic narrative jettisons journalistic detachment and views his ordeal through the distorting emotions of fear, shame, and self-pity. But in telling his story this way, he brings us viscerally into the mental universe of the Taliban, where paranoia and fanaticism reign, and survival requires currying favor with powerful men. The result is a gripping tale of endurance and a vivid evocation of Afghanistan's grim realities."—Publishers Weekly

Review:

"An American journalist exploring the war zone on the Afghanistan-Pakistan border reports unwanted lessons in its perils in this harrowing memoir. Having traveled with the 'freedom fighters' in the '80s, Van Dyk thought he had the connections and knowledge to navigate the tribal lands between Pakistan and Afghanistan, but he was captured by a fractious band of Taliban fighters in 2008. Van Dyk (In Afghanistan: An American Odyssey) and his Afghan guides spent 44 days in a dark cell. Well-fed but terrified, he felt a nightmare of helplessness and disorientation. Dependent on a jailer who mixed solicitude with jocular death threats and a ruthless Taliban commander who could free or kill him on a whim, the author performed Muslim prayers in an attempt to appease his captors; wary of murky conspiracies involving his cellmates, he 'was afraid of everybody, including the children.' Van Dyk's claustrophobic narrative jettisons journalistic detachment and views his ordeal through the distorting emotions of fear, shame, and self-pity. But in telling his story this way, he brings us viscerally into the mental universe of the Taliban, where paranoia and fanaticism reign, and survival requires currying favor with powerful men. The result is a gripping tale of endurance and a vivid evocation of Afghanistan's grim realities. 1 map. (June 22)" Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)

Synopsis:

An American reporter's chilling account of being kidnapped and imprisoned by the Taliban, in the no-man's-land between Afghanistan and Pakistan.

Synopsis:

Jere Van Dyk was on the wrong side of the border. He and three Afghan guides had crossed into the tribal areas of Pakistan, where no Westerner had ventured for years, hoping to reach the home of a local chieftain by nightfall. But then a dozen armed men in black turbans appeared over the crest of a hill.

Captive is Van Dyk's searing account of his forty-five days in a Taliban prison, and it is gripping and terrifying in the tradition of the best prison literature. The main action takes place in a single room, cut off from the outside world, where Van Dyk feels he can trust nobody—not his jailers, not his guides (who he fears may have betrayed him), and certainly not the charismatic Taliban leader whose fleeting appearances carry the hope of redemption as well as the prospect of immediate, violent death.

Van Dyk went to the tribal areas to investigate the challenges facing America there. His story is of a deeper, more personal challenge, an unforgettable tale of human endurance.

About the Author

Jere Van Dyk is the author of In Afghanistan: An American Odyssey, an account of his travels with the mujahideen in the 1980s, during their struggle against the Soviet Union. Since then, he has covered stories all over the world, mainly for The New York Times, CBS News, and National Geographic, that have required him to visit places where few Western reporters had ventured before. He lives in New York City.

Product Details

ISBN:
9780805088274
Subtitle:
My Time as a Prisoner of the Taliban
Author:
Van Dyk, Jere
Author:
Jere Van Dyk
Publisher:
St. Martin's Griffin
Subject:
General
Subject:
Editors, Journalists, Publishers
Subject:
Military - Afghan War (2001-)
Subject:
Personal Memoirs
Subject:
General Political Science
Subject:
Taliban
Subject:
Afghanistan - History - 2001-
Subject:
Leadership
Subject:
Biography - General
Subject:
General-General
Subject:
Terrorism
Edition Description:
Trade Cloth
Publication Date:
20110607
Binding:
Electronic book text in proprietary or open standard format
Grade Level:
General/trade
Language:
English
Illustrations:
8 CDs, 10 hours
Pages:
288
Dimensions:
9.25 x 6.13 in

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Related Subjects

Biography » General
Featured Titles » History and Social Science
History and Social Science » Asia » Afghanistan
History and Social Science » World History » Afghanistan and Pakistan

Captive: My Time as a Prisoner of the Taliban Used Hardcover
0 stars - 0 reviews
$7.95 In Stock
Product details 288 pages Times Books - English 9780805088274 Reviews:
"Publishers Weekly Review" by , "An American journalist exploring the war zone on the Afghanistan-Pakistan border reports unwanted lessons in its perils in this harrowing memoir. Having traveled with the 'freedom fighters' in the '80s, Van Dyk thought he had the connections and knowledge to navigate the tribal lands between Pakistan and Afghanistan, but he was captured by a fractious band of Taliban fighters in 2008. Van Dyk (In Afghanistan: An American Odyssey) and his Afghan guides spent 44 days in a dark cell. Well-fed but terrified, he felt a nightmare of helplessness and disorientation. Dependent on a jailer who mixed solicitude with jocular death threats and a ruthless Taliban commander who could free or kill him on a whim, the author performed Muslim prayers in an attempt to appease his captors; wary of murky conspiracies involving his cellmates, he 'was afraid of everybody, including the children.' Van Dyk's claustrophobic narrative jettisons journalistic detachment and views his ordeal through the distorting emotions of fear, shame, and self-pity. But in telling his story this way, he brings us viscerally into the mental universe of the Taliban, where paranoia and fanaticism reign, and survival requires currying favor with powerful men. The result is a gripping tale of endurance and a vivid evocation of Afghanistan's grim realities. 1 map. (June 22)" Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
"Synopsis" by ,
An American reporter's chilling account of being kidnapped and imprisoned by the Taliban, in the no-man's-land between Afghanistan and Pakistan.
"Synopsis" by , Jere Van Dyk was on the wrong side of the border. He and three Afghan guides had crossed into the tribal areas of Pakistan, where no Westerner had ventured for years, hoping to reach the home of a local chieftain by nightfall. But then a dozen armed men in black turbans appeared over the crest of a hill.

Captive is Van Dyk's searing account of his forty-five days in a Taliban prison, and it is gripping and terrifying in the tradition of the best prison literature. The main action takes place in a single room, cut off from the outside world, where Van Dyk feels he can trust nobody—not his jailers, not his guides (who he fears may have betrayed him), and certainly not the charismatic Taliban leader whose fleeting appearances carry the hope of redemption as well as the prospect of immediate, violent death.

Van Dyk went to the tribal areas to investigate the challenges facing America there. His story is of a deeper, more personal challenge, an unforgettable tale of human endurance.

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