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I Am Malala: How One Girl Stood Up for Education and Changed the World (Young Readers Edition) Paperback – June 14, 2016
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From School Library Journal
Gr 6 Up—In this young readers edition of Yousafzai's best-selling memoir, the Nobel Peace Prize winner retells her experiences at home and at school and discusses the impact of the Taliban presence in Pakistan. Her strong voice and ideals come across on every page, emphasizing how her surroundings and supportive family helped her become the relevant figure she is today. Yousafzai highlights the importance of school and how it was the only space where she felt empowered. Although at times the transitions between personal accounts and historical background feel abrupt, Yousafzai effectively summarizes her story and her advocacy for girls' education, peace, and human rights. Above all, she stresses that she doesn't want to be known as the girl shot by the Taliban but rather as a young person who actively fought for education. A strong addition to social studies, history, and biography collections.—Sujei Lugo, Somerville Public Library, MA --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
"This is no simple redaction. With the capable assistance of co-author McCormick, the account has been effectively rewritten specifically for children...[I]t should pack quite a wallop."―Kirkus Reviews
"Although her efforts to attend school, and the subsequent attack she endured, make for a powerful story, Yousafzai writes just as vividly about her daily life as a child in Pakistan.... Yousafzai's fresh, straightforward voice creates an easily read narrative that will introduce a slew of younger readers to both her story and her mission."―Booklist
[Yousafzai's] strong voice and ideals come across on every page, emphasizing how her surroundings and supportive family helped her become the relevant figure she is today....―SLJ
Top customer reviews
Malala's life is fascinating, even without her having been shot by the Taliban, although I imagine fewer people would care about her story without that detail (I know I never would have heard of her without it). I was astonished by the details about her homes and school. It seems like she was basically living in poverty, at least by American standards, but the way she talks about it, it seems like they were pretty well off by Pakistani standards. It was just a bit of a disconnect for me.
I was both intrigued and horrified by her account of how the Taliban took over her beloved Swat valley. I know that we Americans, in general, wonder what would make Muslims turn to and/or support the Taliban, but after reading Malala's account, it makes sense. I imagine if the government and Red Cross had ignored the needs of the residents of New Orleans after Katrian, and the Taliban came in with food, bottled water, and lumber to start repairing the damage for the poor most affected, you'd find a fair few of them supporting the Taliban today, too. Nowhere close to a majority, but enough that getting the Taliban out of New Orleans would be difficult, especially if the National Guard wasn't really trying. It's easy to criticize the Muslims that don't speak out against radical Islamic groups, but it's harder to do that when you put yourself in their shoes, like this book does.
Overall I give I am Malala 5 out of 5 stars.
Malala describes an idyllic existence in Pakistan's Swat Valley prior to the arrival of the Taliban. Her words slowly take apart her beloved homeland, as militants destroy important ancient landmarks and attempt to rewrite history and infiltrate Pakistan's rich culture.
Named for Malalai of Maiwand, Pakistan's version of Joan of Arc, Malala is a special girl who is very close with her family, especially her father, the founder of the school she attends. Malala and her friends find respite from the near constant bombings and shootings on the streets of their city at school six days per week.
Unfortunately, Malala's school and father are under threat from the Pakistan Taliban to close the school's doors, as its values do not coincide with those of Sharia Law.
Following in the footsteps of her beloved father, Malala began speaking out against militancy and championing the right of girls to be educated and giving interviews to various news outlets at age eleven.
Amid suicide bombings and the mass blasting of schools, Malala perseveres, continuing to attend school despite constant threats to cease her education.
The Taliban virtually takes over Pakistan, while authorities stand idly by, merely allowing mass killings, all in the name of Sharia. Malala bravely asserts in an interview that the Taliban "are abusing our religion."
In October 2012, Malala was targeted and brutally shot by a member of the Taliban, along with two girls sitting on either side of her, due to her standing up for the education of girls and speaking out against terrorism.
Miraculously, Malala and her two classmates survived the attack and escaped Pakistan. Malala is the youngest person ever to be nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize and continues to advocate for universal education through her personal fund.
I never thought I would be interested in reading Malala's whole story, but I was captivated by her words. Not only am I in awe of Malala's accomplishments and good deeds, I am amazed and deeply saddened by the destruction of her homeland and culture.
Malala tells her story in such a way that makes it easy for the reader to empathize with her and her situation. As I read I Am Malala, I imagined what it would be like if my home country, the US, were overrun by terrorists who want to destroy everything that I love and believe in.
I admire Malala's courage very much and truly hope she is able to one day return to her beloved Pakistan.