When the Apricots Bloom

Written by:
Gina Wilkinson
Narrated by:
Raghad Chaar

Unabridged Audiobook

Release Date
February 2021
10 hours 28 minutes
Inspired by her own experiences stationed in Baghdad during Saddam Hussein's rule, former foreign correspondent Gina Wilkinson's evocative, suspenseful debut is told through the eyes of three very different women in Iraq at the turn of the millennium.

At night, in Huda's fragrant garden, a breeze sweeps in from the desert encircling Baghdad, rustling the leaves of her apricot trees and carrying warning of visitors at her gate. Huda, a secretary at the Australian embassy, lives in fear of the Mukhabarat-the secret police who watch and listen for any scrap of information that can be used against America and its allies. They have ordered her to befriend Ally Wilson, the deputy ambassador's wife. Huda has no wish to be an informant, but fears for her teenage son, who may be forced to join a deadly militia. Nor does she know that Ally has dangerous secrets of her own.

Huda's former friend, Rania, enjoyed a privileged upbringing as the daughter of a sheikh. Now her family's wealth is gone, and Rania too is battling to keep her child safe and a roof over their heads. As the women's lives intersect, their hidden pasts spill into the present. Facing possible betrayal at every turn, all three must trust in a fragile, newfound loyalty, even as they discover how much they are willing to sacrifice to protect their families.
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Debra C.

This book is a little hard to follow. When you get a grasp on the story, it was okay.

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Very moving story. This is a story that could happen in any country under totalitarian rule.

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Valerie P.

This is a lovely and heartbreaking book. The most fundamental ethical questions, which many people encounter in life, are poignantly pondered. I enjoyed this book and highly recommend it.

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Christine B.

The perspective of life in Iraq was interesting. Female perspective even more.

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I loved this book. It was fascinating to see Iraq through three different women.

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Brenda S.

This book was very slow moving but I really enjoyed it. Great narration.

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Marilyn V.

I had a hard time getting into the story initially, mostly due to the accent of the narrator. But after I began to get used to her and the names of the characters , I got into the story. I’m glad I persisted as I ended up liking it quite a bit.

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Kristyn L.

Feel like I learned so much from this book and truly have so much to be grateful! I can’t imagine how anyone lives under such conditions, the bravery of people truly is inspiring!

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Judy P.

It was hard to follow up until the last few chapters. Overall a great story and the narrator did a fine job

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