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Reviewed by Pikasho Deka for Readers' Favorite
The collapse of the Soviet Union is one of the most significant events of the twentieth century. Camel from Kyzylkum is the story of the author, Lara Gelya, an immigrant from the Soviet Union who left her motherland in the late ‘80s and arrived in the United States in search of a better life. However, before she could carve out a life for herself in America, Gelya had to navigate some overwhelming obstacles along the way. Born in Vinnytsia, Ukraine, she completed her studies at the Geological College in Kyiv. From 1968 to 1988, Gelya spent twenty years as a geophysicist working in the Kyzylkum Desert in Uzbekistan to explore and excavate uranium and gold. After a failed marriage, escalating political turmoil forced her to undertake a dangerous journey through multiple countries before her eventual arrival in the land of dreams.
Camel from Kyzylkum is an inspiring real-life story of a woman's pursuit of a better life against all odds. Lara Gelya provides a vivid account of her experiences as a Soviet Union immigrant who managed to overcome extraordinary challenges and struggles to finally find her dream home. With an unflinching narrative, Gelya lays bare her life story. Her tale showcases the resilient spirit of the human soul and proves that one should never give up hope, even in adversity. Overall, I found Camel from Kyzylkum a thoroughly riveting read and a memoir that I will highly recommend to everyone.