A love story of an American woman and a Pakistani-born Muslim man, who seem to have bridged the divide between Western and Islamic world views. But when the husband’s father is killed by a U.S. drone attack near the Afghan border, their cross-cultural family descends into conflicting ideas of loyalty, justice, identity, revenge, and terrorism. With candor, beauty, and unusual insight, their story reveals both how decent people can justify horrific acts, and the emotional power required to heal.

An important and timely read, Beneath the Same Heaven is a book about terrorism, but told from a very personal, intimate perspective. The terrorist in the novel is not a dehumanized other from a barbaric culture, but a relatable man, a husband to a mainstream American woman and the father of their children. The story reminds readers that the desire for justice, like the desire for love, is universal.

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About the Author:

Anne Marie Ruff worked as a journalist, based for several years in Bangkok, Thailand, and Abu Dhabi in the United Arab Emirates. Her work has been published/broadcast by NPR, BBC, PRI, PBS, Christian Science Monitor, Time Asia, Far Eastern Economic Review, and International Herald Tribune TV. Ruff’s first novel, Through These Veins, about the development of a cure for AIDS, drew on her reporting about the environment, biodiversity, biotech, and AIDS research, in Thailand, Ethiopia, and Turkmenistan.

Born in Minnesota, she attended Blake Upper School before moving to Los Angeles to study geography and environmental studies at UCLA. She has recently returned to Minnesota where she lives in the big woods with her Indian born-and-raised husband and their two sons. Beneath the Same Heaven is her second work of literary fiction.

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