January 15, 2016

Reviews of Destination:Freedom (part 1 from Trilogy)



Frank, powerful and thought-provoking true-life Story
Destination:Freedom by Lily Amis is a frank, powerful and thought-provoking true-life story. It’s a memoir of Lily’s life as a refugee, escaping a war-torn country and oppressive regime only to find she’s not welcome wherever she goes.
Passed from pillar to post by the authorities, she finds freedom of one kind but encounters barriers and brick walls everywhere else. The often harrowing story starts with Lily’s early years in ‘ASIACity’ – actually Tehran, the capital of Iran – in the late 1970s with her mother.
The country undergoes a revolution that brings in a hardline and repressive regime, but it is the outbreak of war with neighbouring Iraq that finally prompts Lily’s mother to escape the country with her daughter. Armed with just two suitcases, Lily and her mother manage to fly to ‘EUCity’ (Zurich, Switzerland) – the only destination they could go to without a visa. All their hopes for freedom and prosperity are thwarted, however, with the realities of living in a new country – the reams of legal red tape and restrictions that prevented them from finding work and left them living on handouts despite a desire to contribute to Society.
Thankfully, Lily’s mum spoke fluent German so they could get by, but it was a life of extreme hardship, humiliation and barely concealed hatred at a time when xenophobia was running high. Never one to shy away from the truth, however brutal, Lily recalls in vivid detail how she and her mother were denied their dignity and basic rights, simply because they were victims of circumstance.
In the end, aged 20, Lily had to resort marrying a Swiss man that she didn’t love in order to gain her long sought-after citizenship, and chance of a future. As she explains in the book, according to bureaucracy she had no other choice available – it was a case of marrying or having to leave her adopted home. This book couldn’t come at a more topical time, when stories of refugees attempting to enter Europe seem constantly in the press. The response is often negative, and rather than viewing refugees as human beings, they are often merely seen as a ‘problem’ to be dealt with.
For reasons like this it is exceedingly rare for a first-hand account of life as a refugee to come along – largely because it is often seen as a shameful and dark time which most people don’t wish to recount. Indeed, Lily Amis is in fact a pseudonym as the author does not wish to disclose her real identity for fear of repercussions.
But Destination: Freedom asks readers to see a bigger picture, one which restores the humanity to refugees and reminds us that they aren’t ‘others’ – they are just like anyone else, wanting to escape danger and destruction for the promise of a better life. This moving story is a both a plea to readers to treat refugees with ‘respect’, and to grant them proper rights to education, work and an independent future. [by]

"Destination: Hell"

"Destination: Hell" would probably be the better title for this extremely painful journey. I really admire Lily Amis and her mum for their incredible strength to overcome so many challenges in Life. Luck was sadly never on their side, but they never gave up. Can't wait to read the second book. [by Kevin S.]

This book deserves allot of attention

Seeing book titles such as "Without my daughter" still on the bestselling list after all these years makes me wonder how long Lily Amis Story will need to be recognized as an Indie-Author?

Let me tell you this, if "Destination: Freedom" was published by a traditional Publishing company it would be a Bestseller already. Not only because it's a TOP issue these days, but because of Lily Amis brutal honesty. She shares her experiences and fears with the reader as if she is telling the story to a close friend. I hope she will get more credit for her courage to share such a delicate topic with the world. Best of luck Lily! [by Alice Meyer]

An honest memoir reflecting our shamefull society

I read allot of memoirs but this one is different. Because Lily is writing so honest and open about topics that no one else would feel comfortable to talk about it. I think it takes allot of courage to write about a very personal topic such as forced marriage. This story is not just a memoir, it is a mirror reflecting our society, our stupid laws and irresponsible mans from today. [by Selena Miles]

No one deserves so much pain in life

I find it unbelievable how bureaucracy and law played with Lily's destiny. Lily and her mother had to deal already with so much disappointments in their life thanks to selfish and stupid men. I wonder how the story continues and if they finally find some luck? I really hope so. No one deserves so much pain and sorrow. [by Justin Kohler]

Eye-opener about refugees

I'm glad that my friend gave me Destination Freedom to read, while the News is full of stories about refugees. I have to admit I'm not a fan of these people that are entering Europe. But after reading Lilys Story I understand the reasons for such a decision. I'm also shocked about the obstacles that these people have to deal with once they are in our countries. It is an eye-opener and my view about refugees has certainly changed. I feel ashamed for my prejudice against them. Read it and you will understand what I mean. [by Jessi K.]

Destination: Freedom Author Lily Amis Tells All

Destination: Freedom is a warts and all book which tells the brutal truth about being a refugee. Lily Amis does not censor herself at all. You learn about her frustration as bureaucracy stops Lily and her mother integrating into their new environment. They escape unimaginable horrors and are held back instead of being helped. If they were helped and given visas they could work and pay tax in the country they arrived in (Switzerland). I hope people in power read this book and some changes are made. This book is timely with the current refugee crisis the world is currently facing. An interesting read from a brutally honest writer. [by Catherine Balavage]

Poignant and heartbreaking

A moving true story of young girl and her Mom and the challenges they face as they leave their country with all the hopes and dreams of creating a new life in the west, only to repeatedly come up against the forces of bureaucracy and racism. A powerful read. [by Bard]

Destination: Freedom is an eye opener

A great book. Rarely, do I read these type of books but I was captivated by this book. I had the good fortune to meet Lily & her mother in Italy. After talking to them, I had to get the book to find out more. It was insightful especially with everything that is going on in the mid-east. It was also inspirational to see what some people have to endure & how they respond. [by Tom S.]

I would highly recommend this book

I would highly recommend this book, it's a vivid and stark description of the trials and tribulations experienced by the author ... the sort of experiences that i'm sure immigrants all round the world are subjected to daily. The story takes place in two unnamed cities, ASIAcity and EUcity. The identity of ASIAcity will be quite easily guessed by many people I think. Not so, EUcity, although there are enough clues to let one take a good guess at which country it is in (actually, it makes for quite a good detective story trying to work it out ;)

First the author describes her early years in ASIAcity (an equal mix of happy and sad memories I think), then the incredible story of their escape, which involves ... no, wait, don't want to give the game away! ;)

Then later, she tells of the heartless treatment at the hands of people only to happy to exploit someone who has already lost almost everything. Again, without spoiling anything, I'll just say there is, in the end, some light at the end of the dark tunnel!

So anyone looking to get a taste of the real life, gritty experiences which i imagine are all too common for the world's many displaced peoples, should start right here with this book. [by Dazzer]

When i read this book i can't stop my mind asking Why?

This fabulous real story is decrypting the secrets of Human-beings in this gloomy world. When i read this book i can't stop my mind asking Why?! And for what sin that little innocent Lily is condemned to tolerate incredible tortures?! And most ridiculous and confusable thing is, that happened in the center of Cradle of new civilization.. i think by reading this painful story, every one asks about meaning and renaming of following useless words. finally people analyze that these attractive words are nothing but barely words. Fate, Destiny, Justice, Rulers, Pioneers, Defenders of Human rights and other relevant organizations are not more than an ugly dark inks in the face of white innocent paper.. only God helped this little Lily by sending a protector angel (Mom) to create a ladder from these terrible obstacles in order to transfer the bitter experiences to the others and become a justice sound of people who have no voice to cry against brutality and injustice. Freedom is best but least people know that it has same fate everywhere!!! The little Lily has come from "Mesopotamia" the cradle of ancient civilization. she belong to the long road of history,she is continuing her liabilities. the little Lily has come from sky to tell us about love and peace, she is a safe box, full of memories. [by Behrooz]
Wake up Call for the West
If asked 'Name the first thing that comes into your mind when Switzerland (in this book called EUcity) is mentioned, most people would probably pick from either 'cheese', 'watches', 'chocolate' or even 'Roger Federer'! 'A Gilded Cage' would probably be last on that list, if at all.

This book presents the reader with a disturbingly new view of Europe. It follows the fortunes (or misfortunes to be exact) of a mother and daughter escaping from their hometown Asiacity at the time of a terrible war amidst personal family problems as well as the obvious economic ramifications of this large scale war. It describes their arduous journey to EUcity, where they hope to be given an opportunity for a new beginning and to conduct a peaceful and tranquil life as contributing members of society in the country that prides itself on exactly that, and where the main bulk of the story takes place. They soon find out that things are not exactly as they imagined...

Written with a unique 'punch' and in first hand prospective by Lily, the daughter part of the mother/daughter duo, the book describes their extraordinary story with heartfelt innocence and genuine emotion of a young girl. As well as documenting their attempts for social integration, it explores their fascinating tale on the inter-personal level. I found myself unwillingly drawn into this story and feeling Lily's heartbeat every step of the way - something that not many books manage to achieve.

Needless to say that as pure dramatical roller-coaster this book is extremely readable (would probably make a great movie). But more seriously, it should open the eyes of the reader to a disturbing reality that is seemingly taking place in a modern, western and progressive European country and could in fact be happening right under our very noses wherever we might be. Namely, that behind the veil of bureaucracy there is an unsavoury hidden agenda to exploit the plight of the most vulnerable section of a so called equal-opportunities and advanced western social system. An agenda to make them feel unwanted and unwelcome and drive them out of, or at best, to the brink of the social system. To say anymore would ruin the effect. Buy it - you won't be disappointed! [by Elli K.]

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