A survivor of the 1994 genocide in Rwanda who later rose to become the speaker of the Rwandan parliament, in opposition to President Paul Kagame, Joseph Sebarenzi fled the country a second time when the strongman removed him from office and seemed to want him permanently silenced. In his remarkably generous memoir, Sebarenzi describes the loss of his parents, seven siblings, and countless other family members; the rise of Kagame and the seemingly miraculous turnaround of Rwanda; and the lessons of ethnic violence and political monopoly in Rwanda and elsewhere.
"Many development specialists consider Rwanda the most promising poor country on Earth. Some others see it quite differently: as a repressive place where one man rules, dissidents are silenced by whatever means necessary, and the regime supports itself by looting the neighboring Congo. This debate makes Rwanda both important and fascinating.... Joseph Sebarenzi presents a thoughtful critique of Kagame's regime. His tale is a provocative warning to the many outsiders who are ready to canonize Kagame."—Washington Post