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Publisher's Summary

Inspired by her own experiences stationed in Baghdad during Saddam Hussein's rule, former foreign correspondent Gina Wilkinson's evocative, suspenseful debut is told through the eyes of three very different women in Iraq at the turn of the millennium.

At night, in Huda's fragrant garden, a breeze sweeps in from the desert encircling Baghdad, rustling the leaves of her apricot trees and carrying warning of visitors at her gate. Huda, a secretary at the Australian embassy, lives in fear of the Mukhabarat - the secret police who watch and listen for any scrap of information that can be used against America and its allies. They have ordered her to befriend Ally Wilson, the deputy ambassador's wife. Huda has no wish to be an informant, but fears for her teenage son, who may be forced to join a deadly militia. Nor does she know that Ally has dangerous secrets of her own. 

Huda's former friend, Rania, enjoyed a privileged upbringing as the daughter of a sheikh. Now her family's wealth is gone, and Rania too is battling to keep her child safe and a roof over their heads. As the women's lives intersect, their hidden pasts spill into the present. Facing possible betrayal at every turn, all three must trust in a fragile, newfound loyalty, even as they discover how much they are willing to sacrifice to protect their families.

©2021 Gina Wilkinson (P)2021 HighBridge, a division of Recorded Books

What listeners say about When the Apricots Bloom

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Great Historical Fiction

I enjoyed this book very much. The story was interesting and kept my attention to the end. The descriptive writing put me right there in Baghdad! It was beautifully written. My only issue was the narration. I found the accent challenging, but it did add to the authenticity of the story; and it didn't change enough between the characters so often I was left wondering who was speaking.

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Now my favorite.

I felt like the writer hurried the ending, as of wanting to be done with the book.

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Great book!

Really enjoyed this! Well written, with great dialogue. Lives of three main characters embedded readers in Iran, almost current day. Fascinating story. Well researched details. I highly recommend!

2 people found this helpful

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Great book

I loved this book. The narrator was great and the story was so good.I loved listening to it while walking.

1 person found this helpful

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A visual experience

Gina Wilkinson writes details with evocative poetic flourish - describing peeling paint as fish scales - it gives the story an old fable feel. It also makes the larger topics of truth and family loyalty, fear and friendship feel universal and intimately relatable.
Rahhad Chaar performs the story with a calm intensity, a perfectly paced urgency. Her care for the characters is palpable. Her delivery of Wilkinson’s storytelling is a visual experience.

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Loved this read...

This was the book read by my book club. I really liked this story. I liked the narrators voice.

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Good book

I read the book for my steps daughter's book club. Didn't find out about it until I began my trip to see here in Tennessee. ;Managed to get about half of it read before the meeting g. The discussion was great.

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Wonderful story

Great story!!!!!!! Kept me at the edge of my chair!!! Highly recommend this book. Thanks

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Good Story

I enjoyed the story, the narrator was a little difficult to understand at times

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well narrated, I just had a hard time getting into

I'm not sure why I had a hard time getting into this book. I t was definitely well narrated.