Anna Badkhen returns to Northern Afghanistan in search of the friends she made in the early days of the occupation, back when it was the safest part of an unsafe land. Blighted, hopeless, still unspeakably beautiful but now overrun by the Taliban, the region is a different place entirely than the one she first encountered. Traveling from village to village, she comes to understand what went so terribly wrong in the North—and, by extension, what is going so terribly wrong in Afghanistan in general. In her dispatches, which she calls “part diary entries, part love letters from a land that stole my heart,” she offers one of the most heartbreaking, lyrical portrayals ever of Afghanistan—and a powerful warning to those seeking to force the country into a bright new future.