Born in Texas and raised in Beirut, Lebanon, Sam's youth was filled with boyhood adventures as well as constant danger. The first half of his memoir, For the Love of Beirut, chronicles with humor and realism his adventures, struggles, and mishaps during the 1975 civil war and the 1982 Israeli invasion of Lebanon. His journey to Virginia in 1986 and his decision to bring attention to the devastation taking place in Beirut started a new chapter in his life as well as his book. Currently, Sam works as a personal trainer in his adopted city of Richmond, VA.
When did you first start writing?
I started writing my thoughts about my youth in Lebanon while I was serving time in a maximum security prison in Virginia. Once I was released, I began compiling more stories, including stories from my time in prison.
What's the story behind your latest book?
It is the story of my youth in Lebanon during the 1975 civil war and the 1982 Israeli invasion. My boyhood was exciting, to say the least, if not filled with danger, every day. For the Love of Beirut chronicles those youthful adventures which culminated in my move to Virginia to live with relatives and a drastic choice I made to call attention to what was happening to my homeland.
This is a serious story of war told with both humor and gravity from a young boy's perspective, a perspective that matures and broadens as he comes of age. Boyhood escapades that rival Tom Sawyer and Huck Finn are part of everyday life in Lebanon along with more daring deeds and just-in-time Houdini escapes. When Sam moves to show all in America what is happening in Beirut, he pays dearly.