Sasson is the internationally bestselling author of groundbreaking non-fiction works, such as Growing Up Bin Laden. Published in 40 countries, her books have sold millions of copies worldwide.
The bold and resourceful author lived in Saudi Arabia 12 years and has worked in, travelled through and researched the Middle East for 32. She has developed friendships with women throughout the region and reported to the world the complicated issues of the area, while leading the charge for change. Military officials, scholars, journalists, authors, universities and the National Organization for Women have all reached out to Sasson for her expertise on the lives of Middle Eastern women. Sasson’s passion for helping others extends to all living creatures. She is a well-known activist for animal rights and has been rescuing animals since she was a young woman.
A respected scholar and humanitarian, Dr. Vijay Kumar Mehta, has recently published a book, JEAN SASSON; A NEW ORIENTALIST (Scholar’s Press, Verlag/Publisher, Germany), in which he gives Sasson credit and praise for accurately portraying religious, social, cultural and political life of the Middle Easterners in the twentieth century, as well as for being an important voice for women of the Middle East.
A native of Alabama, Sasson is currently working on two projects, one secret for now, and the other, her long-awaited memoir revealing her personal and compelling adventures in Saudi Arabia, Lebanon, Kuwait and Iraq.
PRINCESS MORE TEARS TO CRY is Jean's latest book. This is the true story of Princess Sultana who is from one of the most important royal families in Saudi Arabia.
For the millions of PRINCESS fans, TEARS will be a special treat. It is an update on the Princess's life: her continued difficult relationship with her father and brother and her once-stormy (now happy) marriage with her husband. There are tales of her difficult grown up daughters who are radically different. In each chapter, she shares the story of a friend or one of her daughter's friends. The stories are happy, sad, tragic, dramatic, and accomplished and cover a vast range of economic statuses: from the wealthy to the poor, from students to the middle class. For new readers, this is a compulsively readable view of life in the "new" Saudi Arabia.
Readers of PRINCESS were gripped by Jean Sasson's powerful indictment of women's lives behind the veil. Now, in the compelling sequel, Jean Sasson and Princess Sultana turn the spotlight on Sultana's two teenage daughters, Maha and Amani.
As second-generation members of the royal family who have benefited from Saudi oil wealth, Maha and Amani are surrounded by untold opulence and luxury from the day they were born. And yet, they are stifled by the unbearably restrictive lifestyle imposed on them, driving them to desperate measures.
Throughout, Sultana and Sasson never tire of their quest to expose the injustices which society levels against women. Princess Sultana once more strikes a chord among all women who are lucky enough to have the freedom to speak out for themselves.
The powerful true story of Sultana continues with PRINCESS SULTANA'S CIRCLE, the third book in Jean Sasson's internationally best selling Princess Trilogy. The forced marriage of Sultana’s niece to a cruel and depraved older man, and Sultana’s discovery of the harem of sex slaves kept by a royal cousin, make her more determined than ever to fight the oppression of women in Saudi Arabia. PRINCESS SULTANA'S CIRCLE paints a horrifying reality for women of the desert Kingdom. It is a haunting look at the danger of Saudi male dominance and the desperate lives of the women they rule.
This is the true story of Yasmeena, a bright and beautiful young Lebanese woman who was imprisoned in Kuwait during the first Gulf War. Yasmeena's shocking journey is a tale of the madness of war, of the sexual brutality unleashed by chaos, and of one woman's courage to stand in danger's way to aid her fellow sufferers. This is an explicit, graphic, and honest book. It is for mature audiences only.
Yasmeena was an innocent abroad. She was a college educated, English-speaking flight attendant graced with an unusual amount of confidence and sophistication. After Saddam's armies invaded Kuwait, Yasmeena's flight out of Kuwait was delayed. Iraqi soldiers threw her into a woman's prison where the guards committed ghastly sexual attacks and tortured the women in excruciating ways.
YASMEENA'S CHOICE reads like a thriller. Sasson has wanted to write this story for many years. But she knew that the sexual explicitness and violence would make the tale difficult to publish. A year ago, Yasmeena's story and the choices she was forced to make invaded Sasson's dreams. She realized that now was the right time to share the story. And so here it is, Sasson's testament to an articulate, angry, brave young woman who not only survived but who was eager to share her story with the world.
It all begins with an ad in the newspaper. When Jean Sasson, a young Southern woman living in Jacksonville Beach, Florida, answers a call to work in the royal hospital in Saudi Arabia, what should have been a two-year stay turns into a life-changing adventure spanning over a decade. Over the years Jean is plunged into the hidden lives of the veiled women in Riyadh, where women are locked in luxurious homes and fundamentalist mutawas terrorize the streets. Jean meets women from all walks of life--a feisty bedouin, an educated mother, a conservative wife of a high-ranking Saudi, and a Saudi princess the world knows as Princess Sultana--all who open a window into Saudi culture and help to reshape Jean's worldviews. AMERICAN CHICK IN SAUDI ARABIA is the first installment in a heartfelt, inspiring memoir about Jean's thirty-year travels and adventures in Saudi Arabia, Lebanon, Kuwait and Iraq.
Jean's first book THE RAPE OF KUWAIT, based on her eye witness reporting on the invasion of Kuwait by Iraqi troops, was an immediate bestseller. Shortly thereafter she became a full-time writer. Her next three books, PRINCESS, PRINCESS SULTANA'S DAUGHTERS, and PRINCESS SULTANA'S CIRCLE, became international sensations as they were the first books to bring to the western world the shocking stories about life for women in Saudi Arabia. Jean is also the author of MAYADA, DAUGHTER OF IRAQ, about the prison experiences of an Iraqi journalist praised by Saddam Hussein; LOVE IN A TORN LAND: The True Story of a Freedom Fighter's Escape from Iraqi Vengeance which tells the story of a beautiful Kurdish woman; GROWING UP BIN LADEN: Osama's Wife and Son Take Us into Their Secret World; and FOR THE LOVE OF A SON: One Afghan Woman's Quest for Her Stolen Child. Her work has been featured in People, Vanity Fair,The New York Times, The Washington Post, The New Yorker, The New York Post, The Sunday London Times, The Guardian, CNN, FOX, NBC, and many other news organizations.
In this incredible true love story, bestselling author Jean Sasson shares Joanna al-Askari's personal journey of fear and fortitude through a Baghdad childhood and life as a Kurdish freedom fighter during the Iran-Iraq War. Inspiring and unforgettable, Love in a Torn Land shares Joanna's passionate and unflagging determination to survive and fight—for love, life, and the freedom of her beloved Kurdistan.
From the New York Times bestselling author of PRINCESS: A True Story of Life Behind the Veil in Saudi Arabia, comes the heartbreaking story of one woman's quest for her stolen child. As a little girl in Afghanistan, Maryam fought for equality and defied the second-class standing of women by pretending to be a boy. When her feisty spirit nearly cost her life, after a public act of rebellion against the invasion of Russia, Maryam is forced to flee to America. But her fresh start at life is short-lived as her arranged marriage to a violent Afghan leaves her with only one joy--the birth of her son. When she attempts to escape her brutal marriage, her husband steals their son away and takes him back to Afghanistan, a land torn by civil war and Taliban oppression. What follows is the stirring true story of one mother's struggle for justice, as she fights to be reunited with her son.
With more than 8 million of her books sold worldwide, Jean is the voice of oppressed women in the Muslim world. She lived in Saudi Arabia for twelve years and traveled throughout the Middle East for thirty years. Her other titles include THE RAPE OF KUWAIT, PRINCESS: A True Story of Life Behind the Veil in Saudi Arabia, PRINCESS SULTANA'S DAUGHTERS, PRINCESS SULTANA'S CIRCLE, MAYADA: DAUGHTER OF IRAQ, LOVE IN A TORN LAND, DAUGHTERS OF ARABIA, and GROWING UP BIN LADEN.
"Anyone with the slightest interest in human rights will find this book heart-wrenching." -Betty Mahmoody
Praise for Jean Sasson's books:
"Unforgettable in content, fascinating in detail...a book to move you to tears." -Fay Weldon
"A fascinating narrative...devastating." -Robert Harris, Sunday Times
"Absolutely riveting and profoundly sad." -People
The New York Times calls GROWING UP BIN LADEN: "The most complete account available of the terrorist's immediate family." (May 15, 2011)
A true story that few ever believed would come to light, GROWING UP BIN LADEN uncovers startling revelations and hidden secrets carefully guarded by the most wanted terrorist of our lifetime, Osama bin Laden.
Sultana is a Saudi Arabian princess, a woman born to fabulous, uncountable wealth. She has four mansions on three continents, her own private jet, glittering jewels, designer dresses galore. But in reality she lives in a gilded cage. She has no freedom, no control over her own life, no value but as a bearer of sons. Hidden behind her black floor-length veil, she is a prisoner, jailed by her father, her husband, her sons, and her country.Sultana is a member of the Saudi royal family, closely related to the king. For the sake of her daughters, she has decided to take the risk of speaking out about the life of women in her country, regardless of their rank. She must hide her identity for fear that the religous leaders in her country would call for her death to punish her honesty. Only a woman in her position could possibly hope to escape from being revealed and punished, despite her cloak and anonymity.Sultana tells of her own life, from her turbulent childhood to her arranged marriage--a happy one until her husband decided to displace her by taking a second wife--and of the lives of her sisters, her friends and her servants. Although they share affection, confidences and an easy camaraderie within the confines of the women's quarters, they also share a history of appaling oppressions, everyday occurrences that in any other culture would be seen as shocking human rights violations; thirteen-year-old girls forced to marry men five times their age, young women killed by drowning, stoning, or isolation in the women's room, a padded, windowless cell where women are confined with neither light nor conversation until death claims them.By speaking out, Sultana risks bringing the wrath of the Saudi establishment upon her head and te heads of her children. But by telling her story to Jean Sasson, Sultana has allowed us to see beyond the veils of this secret society, to the heart of a nation where sex, money, and power reign supreme.
A member of one of the most distinguished and honored families in Iraq, Mayada grew up surrounded by wealth and royalty. But when Saddam Hussein’s regime took power, she was thrown into cell 52 in the infamous Baladiyat prison with seventeen other nameless, faceless women from all walks of life. To ease their suffering, these “shadow women” passed each day by sharing their life stories. Now, through Jean Sasson, Mayada is finally able to tell her story—and theirs—to the world.
The Rape of Kuwait was written right after the invasion and prior to the first Gulf War that freed Kuwait from Iraq's grasp. The book consists of individual stories of what people experienced on the day of the invasion. There are stories about Kuwaitis, Palestinians, and other nationalities.