The Bad-Ass Librarians of Timbuktu by Joshua Hammer audiobook

The Bad-Ass Librarians of Timbuktu: And Their Race to Save the World’s Most Precious Manuscripts

By Joshua Hammer
Read by Paul Boehmer

HighBridge, Highbridge Audio
9.05 Hours Unabridged
Format: Digital Download (In Stock)
  • $24.99
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    ISBN: 9781681681436

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  • $29.99

    ISBN: 9781681681429

In the 1980s, a young adventurer and collector for a government library, Abdel Kader Haidara, journeyed across the Sahara Desert and along the Niger River, tracking down and salvaging tens of thousands of ancient Islamic and secular manuscripts that had fallen into obscurity. The Bad-Ass Librarians of Timbuktu tells the incredible story of how Haidara, a mild-mannered archivist and historian from the legendary city of Timbuktu, later became one of the world’s greatest and most brazen smugglers. In 2012, thousands of al-Qaeda militants from northwest Africa seized control of most of Mali, including Timbuktu. They imposed Sharia law, chopped off the hands of accused thieves, stoned to death unmarried couples, and threatened to destroy the great manuscripts. As the militants tightened their control over Timbuktu, Haidara organized a dangerous operation to sneak all 350,000 volumes out of the city to the safety of southern Mali. Over the past twenty years, journalist Joshua Hammer visited Timbuktu numerous times and is uniquely qualified to tell the story of Haidara’s heroic and ultimately successful effort to outwit al-Qaeda and preserve Mali’s—and the world’s—literary patrimony. Hammer explores the city’s manuscript heritage and offers never before reported details about the militants’ march into northwest Africa. But above all, The Bad-Ass Librarians of Timbuktu is an inspiring account of the victory of art and literature over extremism.

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Summary

Summary

A New York Times Book Review Editor’s Choice

A Los Angeles Times bestseller

In the 1980s, a young adventurer and collector for a government library, Abdel Kader Haidara, journeyed across the Sahara Desert and along the Niger River, tracking down and salvaging tens of thousands of ancient Islamic and secular manuscripts that had fallen into obscurity. The Bad-Ass Librarians of Timbuktu tells the incredible story of how Haidara, a mild-mannered archivist and historian from the legendary city of Timbuktu, later became one of the world’s greatest and most brazen smugglers.

In 2012, thousands of al-Qaeda militants from northwest Africa seized control of most of Mali, including Timbuktu. They imposed Sharia law, chopped off the hands of accused thieves, stoned to death unmarried couples, and threatened to destroy the great manuscripts. As the militants tightened their control over Timbuktu, Haidara organized a dangerous operation to sneak all 350,000 volumes out of the city to the safety of southern Mali.

Over the past twenty years, journalist Joshua Hammer visited Timbuktu numerous times and is uniquely qualified to tell the story of Haidara’s heroic and ultimately successful effort to outwit al-Qaeda and preserve Mali’s—and the world’s—literary patrimony. Hammer explores the city’s manuscript heritage and offers never before reported details about the militants’ march into northwest Africa. But above all, The Bad-Ass Librarians of Timbuktu is an inspiring account of the victory of art and literature over extremism.

Editorial Reviews

Editorial Reviews

“Part history, part scholarly adventure story, and part journalist survey of the volatile religious politics of the Maghreb region…Hammer writes with verve and expertise.” New York Times Book Review
“History depends on whose stories get told and which books survive; in Timbuktu, thanks to Haidara and his associates, inquiry, humanity, and courage live on in the libraries.” Boston Globe
“Has all the elements of a classic adventure novel…Riveting skullduggery, revealing history, and current affairs combine in a compelling narrative with a rare happy ending.” Seattle Times

Reviews

Reviews

Author

Author Bio: Joshua Hammer

Author Bio: Joshua Hammer

Joshua Hammer is the author of the bestselling The Bad-Ass Librarians of Timbuktu, as well as The Kalinka Affair, Yokohama Burning, and A Season in Bethlehem, among others. He is a contributing editor to Smithsonian and Outside, is a frequent contributor to the New York Review of Books, and has written for publications including the New York Times Magazine, GQ, Smithsonian, Atlantic, New Yorker, and National Geographic. He was born in New York and graduated cum laude from Princeton University with a degree in English literature. He has won numerous journalism awards.

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Details

Details

Available Formats : Digital Download, CD
Category: Nonfiction/History
Runtime: 9.05
Audience: Adult
Language: English