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Qais Akbar Omar was a young boy when his family fled their home in Kabul after civil war broke out. His father hoped to take them out of Afghanistan, but at every step of the way ran into difficulty, and Omar and his family became nomads in their own country. As they bounced from village to village, the group ended up living in unusual places, including the caves next to the famous -- and now destroyed -- Buddha statues. On one stop, Omar met a young carpet weaver. His fascination with the art saves him when his family returns to Kabul as the city falls under Taliban rule. Omar discusses his new memoir, “A Fort of Nine Towers,” with Diane.
Author Qais Akbar Omar manages his family's carpet business in Kabul, Afghanistan. View a selection of his carpet designs, ranging from traditional to contemporary. Copyright © 2013 by Qais Akbar Omar. All rights reserved.
Excerpted from "A Fort of Nine Towers: An Afghan Family Story" by Qais Akbar Omar, published in April 2013 by Farrar, Straus and Giroux, LLC. Copyright © 2013 by Qais Akbar Omar. All rights reserved.