With a foreword by Ilhan Omar, this breathtaking work of literary nonfiction reveals the power of solidarity for women facing the inadequacies of the US immigration system.
Accidental Sisters follows five refugee women in Houston, Texas, as they navigate a program for single mothers overseen by Alia Altikrity, a former refugee from Iraq. Grounded in the words of these women—Mina from Iraq, Mendy from Sudan, Sara and Zara from Syria, and Elikya from the Democratic Republic of the Congo—this book recounts their lives in their mother countries, how they were forced to flee, and their struggles to find belonging in an epicenter of refugee resettlement.
Readers join author Kimberly Meyer on a journey with each woman as they experience Alia's guiding philosophy: that small, direct, meaningful acts of mutual care are the foundation for a flourishing community. While celebrating the sanctuary the women eventually find, the book critiques the US refugee resettlement program for its insistence on rapid self-sufficiency and offers an alternative American Dream rooted in sisterhood and solidarity. Immersive and intimate, Accidental Sisters inspires hope for a way forward in the face of pandemics, political inaction, and climate change.