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Author and translator Marcela Grad explores the life of the late Afghan leader, Ahmad Shah Massoud, through personal stories told to her by those who accompanied Massoud during his struggle to liberate Afghanistan from the Soviet invasion and the Taliban, and by others from around the world who knew and helped Massoud. Ahmad Shah Massoud was assassinated by Al Qaeda suicide bombers posing as journalists just two days before the 9/11 terrorist attacks. It is widely believed that Massoud was killed to help pave the way for 9/11. Today, Massoud has considered the national hero of Afghanistan and the September 9th anniversary of his death is a national holiday there. Grad spent over four years interviewing a diverse group of Afghans who were commanders, members of the mujahideen, personal secretaries, envoys, women of the resistance, and members of Massuod’s family.

About the Author

Marcela Grad is a writer and translator born in Buenos Aires, Argentina. The stories in this book were collected by her during a period of four years in which she interviewed Afghans as well as people around the world who knew and accompanied Massoud in the long resistance against the Soviets and the Taliban.


FROM THAT FLAME follows journalist Michelle Garrett as she interviews the legendary Commander Ahmed Shah Massoud – the “Lion of Panjshir” – in Afghanistan’s rugged Hindu Kush Mountains. Without warning, an attack by Taliban and al-Qaeda troops propels Michelle into a wartime adventure with Commander Massoud and his Mujahidin, one in which friendship between the journalist and Massoud grows, giving her a unique perspective into the man the Wall Street Journal credited as being “the Afghan who ended the Cold War.” “The kind of story that people need to know about … It stimulates the body, the mind, and most importantly the soul.” —Edward James Olmos, actor and activist “Massoud grieves in the novel, and then we, who have come to know him in this thoughtful and well-researched book, grieve for him and for his dreams — and our own. Ms. Beverly has given us much to ponder.” [The book says] Pay attention.” —Mary Sheeran, author Who Have the Power “The amount of in-depth research it contains is extraordinary and is evident within the story. MaryAnn brings back to life for the reader a man who is truly worthy of the appellation ‘Hero’.” —Katherine Swan, artist/artist representative (Duncan Regehr, RCA) “History wears two faces. One is built of facts and timelines, names and places. But the other face, whose marks are far more indelible, less vulnerable to manipulation, is the image it impresses on those who lived it. This book is about the second: the image of one man that has marked his nation, his people forever. Set against a quick moving and suspense-filled background, the author has given us not only a powerful portrait of a modern hero, but posed some of the most burning questions of human life today, and answers them exquisitely. Read with caution: it might change your life.” —Helene Walker, an independent reviewer “Ms. Beverly has captured the heart and essence of the man the world knows as the Lion of Panjshir. Her book flows well, and even the most up-to-date history buff who knows the ‘ending’ will want to keep reading — possibly hoping for a miracle.” —Marsha de Garcia, independent reviewer It is Massoud who always has a plan. It is Massoud who always has a vision. It is Massoud who always has a strategy. He didn’t ask for any of this, but when it was laid on his shoulders, he accepted the responsibility and has never shrugged it off,” Abdullah explains to Michelle in MaryAnn T. Beverly’s novel, From That Flame. At three hundred and thirty-four pages, this engaging historical fiction reads more like a true story about Commander Ahmed Shah Massoud, known as the “Lion of Panjshir” of Afghanistan. Targeted toward readers who want to learn about the Taliban and al-Qaeda fighting against this leader and the mujahidin in the Hindu Kush Mountains, it has biographical connections to “the Afghan who ended the Cold War” that Osama bin Laden assassinated two days before he attacked America. As the story evolves, one sees the obvious intense love Michelle develops for the Commander as he tries relentlessly to keep Afghan free from the Taliban as he explains his ultimate mission to her. As each day countdowns to the bombing of the World Trade Center on September 11, 2001, both man and woman find their purpose in life as they deal with regret, guilt, and acceptance during wartime tragedies. With much description of the territory and history of the land along with the political aspect of war and its participating and non-participating players, Beverly sets the scene of dissension, disillusion, and death during this pivotal time in world history. —by Conny Crisalli.

About the Author

MaryAnn T. Beverly is an Ohio native who has made her home in Columbia, SC for the past 25 years. A former high school English teacher, and married mother of two, she left teaching to write and direct a documentary movie, “The Arts in Education,” in Cali, Colombia, South America. After 9/11, and the invasion of Afghanistan she learned about freedom fighter Ahmed Shah Massoud who was assassinated by Osama bin Laden only two days before the tragic suicide bombings took place. As Beverly began to conduct extensive research on the man whom Afghan people call the “Lion of Panjshir”, she discovered a fascinating 30-year history of our two countries, beginning with the Russian invasion of Afghanistan’s in 1979, up through the mistakes and blunders made by the CIA and six U.S. presidents.

For over 2,500 years, the forbidding territory of Afghanistan has served as a vital crossroads for armies and has witnessed history-shaping clashes between civilizations: Greek, Arab, Mongol, and Tartar, and, in more recent times, British, Russian, and American. When U.S. troops entered Afghanistan in the weeks following September 11, 2001, they overthrew the Afghan Taliban regime and sent the terrorists it harbored on the run. But America's initial easy victory is in sharp contrast to the difficulties it faces today in confronting the Taliban resurgence.

Originally published in 2002, Stephen Tanner's Afghanistan has now been completely updated to include the crucial turn of events since America first entered the country.

About the Author

Stephen Tanner is a New York-based military historian who has written several highly regarded books, including Epic Retreats: From 1776 to the Evacuation of Saigon.


In this book, author Andrew Ronald shares his experiences with the legendary Lion of Panjshir, Afghan leader Ahmed Shah Massoud. Killed mysteriously just two days before the Al Qaeda attacks on the World Trade Center, Massoud has been called the 'Afghan Che Guevara' for his vision of his country's future and his will and desire to fulfill that vision. Ronald's writings and anecdotes give us a deep and crucial insight into the character, beliefs, and personal makeup of one of Central Asia's most intriguing and important personalities over the last two decades.

About the Author

Andrew Ronald started a charity in the late 1980s, the Remote Communities Foundation, dedicated to the training of medics and nurses and the provision of medical equipment and products in isolated areas; his travels have taken him around the world.