Abdi Nor Iftin Courtesy Erin Moore

The University of Maine at Augusta Student Life will host author Abdi Nor Iftin at its next virtual Moose Book Club event.

The talk will be held at noon Tuesday, April 6, via Zoom. The Moose Book Club will discuss Iftin’s memoir “Call Me American,” and discuss his experience as an immigrant in Maine as part of UMA’s Cultural Celebration Day activities.

The event is open to the public, but registration is required at https://forms.gle/FFbLGa76yoa3KUJDA.

Born in Mogadishu to nomadic parents, Iftin survived famine, war and child soldiering. Thanks to the movies available to him, he taught himself English by watching American action films. By repeating and imitating the carefree actors, he earned himself the nickname “Abdi American.”

Through guerrilla journalism, Abdi dispatched stories about his life to a series titled “Messages from Mogadishu” on American Public Media. His stories were short-listed for Peabody Awards in 2016. These stories were later picked by NPR, the BBC, and later This America.

After surviving a bombing at his house one evening in 2009, Abdi left his home country and moved to Kenya, where he and his brother lived as refugees. He won entrance to the U.S. in August 2014 in the annual visa lottery, though his route to America — ending in a harrowing sequence of events that nearly stranded him in Nairobi — did not come easily.

Now a bestselling and award-winning author based in Maine — featured on CNN and NPR, and in the New York Times, Washington Post and Boston Globe — Iftin is an advocate for refugee and immigrant rights. He is dedicated to bringing people together through his stories of survival and resilience. He is working on a documentary based on his memoir.

For more information, call Aaminah Aleem at 207-621-3374.

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