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A Nigerian native who emigrated to the United States at age 11, Alex Owumi's exploits on the basketball court earned him a college scholarship to Georgetown University. Undrafted by the NBA, Owumi pursued his basketball dream overseas, eventually signing with Al-Nasr of Libya, a state-run athletic club privately funded by the family of Libyan president Muammar Qaddafi.
Owumi's tenure with Al-Nasr was interrupted by the Libyan uprising and resulting civil war. Imprisoned in his Benghazi apartment for more than two weeks with no food, phone, Internet, or hope, Owumi wondered whether he would make it out of Libya alive. Despite his weakened condition and the dangers lurking in the city, he was able to escape Benghazi and flee the country. Smuggled to a refugee camp in Egypt, he was, much to his surprise, contacted by an Egyptian team seeking his services. And so, in a bizarre, storybook ending, Owumi finished the year by helping lead the team to an unlikely league championship, earning league MVP honors in the process.
Qaddafi's Point Guard is a book about hope and longing, conflict (cultural, political, and military), and ultimately, triumph - to overcome obstacles and survive against the most desperate odds.
What listeners say about Qaddafi's Point GuardAverage Customer Ratings
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Very good story
I really liked this book. The narration was authentic and interesting.
The story was strong and realistic.
I 'll never eat a cockroach the same.
1 person found this helpful
- Katarzyna Binkowska
What a story shared!
Amazing and brave to share such an experience! I felt every emotion reading it! And at the same time being aware what I felt is nothing in comparison to what Alex must have felt/ gone through. I read a lot but this book was one of my favourites. It hurt, it was felt, it questioned lots, and yet still despite all made me feel grateful for what we are blessed with.
- Daniel R
Fascinating true tail of wrong place wrong time
A quite amazing story of a sportsman who found himself in the wrong place at the wrong time, living in Gaddafi's son's apartment as the Libyan people rose up against him. His fight to stay alive, a glimpse into the horror that surrounded him as civil war raged and the fear and frustration that engulfed him as he tried to escape.
Intertwined with his time in and escape from Benghazi was his journey there, from birth in Nigeria through his time in Boston via London, his frustrations in the American collegiate system and onwards to becoming a pro basketball player in far flung corners of the world.
A truly amazing tail of survival and a horrible glimpse into how quickly a situation can descend into chaos, madness and horror, alongside the journey of a little boy from Lagos chasing his basketball dream.
A fascinating listen.
- Lance Johnson
Misleading title - Qaddafi never appears in it!
This is the Godzilla of writing faff - irrelevant stories that eventually lead to the main story. Like the recent Godzilla movie, you see the flash of Godzilla (the actual story of him in the civil war) at small times peppered throughout the book, while mostly focusing on faff just to delay the punchline. Eventually u get to see Godzilla at the end of the movie, but by this time, you were so angry because you had to sit through all the crap to get there. Godzila was only about 2 hrs, this is over 8hrs!
Let me put it in an another way.
Imagine you had an interesting story for two weeks of your life. Then imagine you want to make money selling the book. What you do is talk about your boring life, your biography, and leave the interesting part which is only a short part of the book towards the end. You write pages of irrelevant detail that the reader does not want. Then at the actual interesting part of the book, you realise you don't have much to say, so you milk every moment for whats it worth. E.g. "the phone rang, it made a sound, like the ringing of freedom. It made me have so many emotions. Is it my mother or is it my dog who I left at 5 years old giving me a call? It took me 30 seconds, each second felt like an hour, as if I am struggling to breathe" - you get the picture, overemphasizing every irrelevant moment.
I understand authors have to meet a certain word limit, but if he had not much to say, just do an article for a magazine and get paid for it. Don't bore us with you boring life details, and write a book.
The author himself does not mentally seem to be the sharpest tool in the box, or shall we say "sharp as sausage". He makes so many dumb decisions I wanted to scream at him, almost hoping he gets run over so he remove his DNA from the gene pool. His poor decisions include (but not limited) (1) Not focusing on one sport (2) Leaving the Georgetown college team (3) Going to Macedonia to play basketball to play for money (4) Going to Libya, when his family told him not to, due to the civil unrest (5) While at a Egypt internment camp, a bus driver helps smuggle him out - he goes and then demands to be put on another bus to Alexandria and leave his friend behind. Like he was shopping at the grocery shop or ordering his favourite meal, knowing he and the poor bus driver could be thrown in jail! Also he has amazing selfishness! His experience is evidence of not making your own decision - because his were so poor.
Look the parts which he explains about the Libyan civil war were horrific, and how he survived was very interesting.Perhaps some of his suffering was unnecessary, because he starved for two weeks, while people around him were eating relatively well. Again, not the sharpest tool in the box.
People need to understand that Qaddafi sent Sub Saharan black African troop mercenaries to control the protests, but they lost and were captured. Because he was black, he could have been easily mistaken for these guys.
Would I recommend you get this book? Absolutely not, watch his TED talk instead. I actually recommend if you have any foreigners who work with/friends with, ask them there war torn stories. They can tell you of stories similar and in briefer detail than this guy would. Probably more interesting.
If you want a good survival story, listen to Viktor Frankl story, "Man's search for meaning". It talks about suffering, and gives you idea how to cope with your own suffering.
If you want to learn about struggles of getting into the NBA, listen to Dre Baldwin "Buy a game".