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Where the Children Take Us by Zain E. Asher

Where the Children Take Us by Zain E. Asher

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In this spellbinding memoir, popular CNN anchor Zain Asher pays tribute to her mother's strength and determination to raise four successful children in the shadow of tragedy. Awaiting the return of her husband and young son from a road trip, Obiajulu Ejiofor receives shattering news. There's been a fatal car crash, and one of them is dead.

In Where the Children Take Us, Obiajulu's daughter, Zain E. Asher, tells the story of her mother's harrowing fight to raise four children as a widowed immigrant in South London. Drawing on tough-love parenting strategies, Obiajulu teaches her sons and daughters to overcome the daily pressures of poverty, crime and prejudice - and much more.

With her relentless support, the children exceed all expectations - becoming a CNN anchor, an Oscar-nominated actor - Asher's older brother is Chiwetel Ejiofor (12 Year A Slave) - a doctor and a thriving entrepreneur. The generations-old Nigerian parenting techniques that lead to the family's salvation were born in the village where young Obiajulu and Arinze meet with their country on the brink of war. Together, they emigrate to London in the 1970s to escape the violence, but soon confront a different set of challenges in the West.

When grief threatens to engulf her fractured family after the accident, Obiajulu, suddenly a single mother in a foreign land, refuses to accept defeat. As her children veer down the wrong path, she instils a family book club with Western literary classics, testing their resolve and challenging their deeper understanding. She plasters newspaper clippings of Black success stories on the walls, all while running Shakespeare theatre lines with her son and finishing homework into the early morning with Zain.

When distractions persist, she cuts the TV cord and installs a residential pay phone. The story of a woman who survived genocide, famine, poverty and crushing grief to rise from war torn Africa to the streets of South London and eventually the drawing rooms of Buckingham Palace, Where the Children Take Us is an unforgettable portrait of strength, tenacity, love and perseverance embodied in one towering woman.
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