Books by Asale
A riveting true story of the lives of two very different women who were involved in international drug smuggling.
Strange Trade tells the compelling stories of Mary, a Liberian drug courier with a college education, and Pauline, a Ugandan wife, mother, and drug cartel boss. A leading experts on women and organized crime, Asale Angel-Ajani spent years interviewing these women in Italy’s notorious Rebibbia Prison–gaining unprecedented access into the narcotics trade–and researching their lives. Herself the daughter of a drug trafficker, Angel-Ajani brings a wrenching, deeply personal perspective to the account of these women’s lives, and offers a nuanced understanding of the global context within which African women are entering the drug trade in ever-increasing numbers.Strange Trade follows Pauline and Mary as they traverse three continents, survive wars, poverty, and shattered families, secure drug shipments, negotiate with members of the Mafia, and commit murder. Angel-Ajani paints rich, intimate, and profoundly surprising portraits of their lives without glamorizing, sanitizing, or offering judgment. The result is an unvarnished journey into a world that, until now, has remained hidden–and a glimpse into the motives that led these women to risk, and ultimately lose, everything.
Praise for Strange Trade
Like a rich literary novel, Strange Trade presents intimate, intricate portraits of characters who are deeply motivated in their own individual ways to risk everything in this dangerous world.The New York Journal of Books