SAND QUEEN is a startling, moving, riveting and disturbing story that unfolds in and around a U.S. military prison in the desert in Iraq. It is told from the points of view of two women: one a U.S. soldier and the other an Iraqi medical student.
The novel is based on Benedict’s research for her most recent nonfiction book, THE LONELY SOLDIER: THE PRIVATE WAR OF WOMEN SERVING IN IRAQ which has won several awards, including the EMMA (Exception Merit in Media Award) from the National Women's Political Caucus and the Ken Book Award, both in 2010.
Benedict has testified twice to Congress on behalf of women soldiers, and lectures at colleges and military academies around the country about gender justice and the military. Her book and play about women soldiers inspired the the February 2011 class action suit against the Pentagon and Secretaries of Defense Rumsfeld and Gates on behalf of military women who have been sexually harassed or assaulted while serving.
A play Benedict wrote based on her interviews with women soldiers, THE LONELY SOLDIER MONOLOGUES, was produced in 2009 and 2010 at two New York City Theaters, The Theater for the New City and La Mama Experimental Theatre Club, and is currently being performed at several campus theaters around the country. The play is available for further productions. See Helen Benedict's website to find out about her other books and projects http://www.helenbenedict.com/