I’ve lived 15 out of my 17 years in Post-9/11 America, but for Addario the experience was new and it especially meant her entire life would change. She spent time in Pakistan and Afghanistan but in the excerpt of this part that effected me the most she was in Baghdad. She describes the building they are staying in and it becomes what seems like a safe home in Iraq. “Eventually the Times house became a fortress…” she goes onto to describe the human aspect of a war zone. The compound, the love and the sex. It sounded like liberation in a war zone, and I really appreciate this aspect of Addario’s writing. The choice to describe everyday life for her in a war zone is a rather effective and strong one and one you see throughout the book, but is one of her best qualities. The calm in the storm is almost leisurely to read until the book swings back to war. The entire book really touches on the human aspect of war, but this description of them feeling almost safe is a nice touch on describing how they really live.
I could use this advice in my writing because it reminds me it doesn’t have to be serious all the time. There is of course the story you want to tell, but its nice to take a break and tell the side stories. Especially stories of elicit love and feelings of freedom and so on and so forth. In politics, theater and sports, you can often find these moments. It’s what happens in the backrooms, the lorckerrooms and the green rooms. What’s happening when these people aren’t working in the public eye. It reminds me of the famous “King of all Kings” piece about Muhammad Ali’s out of the boxing ring life. Sometimes you need to pull away and find what’s true in the world. It’s what is reliving about Addario’s writing, and it is what I would like to try and incorporate in future pieces if I can find the space or time to do it without pulling away from my original message.