Malala is a child committed to getting an education, even with the risks high, being a girl in an area of Pakistan threatened by the Taliban. Malala is an inspiration, but this book was less engaging than I had hoped. Much of the book is a modern history of her region of Pakistan. It is filled with things Malala was told and not experienced herself. Even when it came to her experiences, she is quite reserved, and it does not feel personal in the way that great memoirs feel. I learned a lot and am glad enough that I listened to this, but the book I want to read is a biography of Malala's father, the most interesting and heroic character. We see a simplistic view of him through his daughter's eyes. I wanted to know him more.
A first-hand account of an incredibly brave hero, a young girl, who chose to speak truth to the world about the brutalities of the Taliban, was shot in the head, and recovered to carry on this mission. Malala should receive a Nobel Prize for her eloquence, her bravery, and her choice to continue speaking out even after her life was almost taken from her. She has earned this reader's eternal esteem.
Right at the top
The honest and simple approach to the feelings of this courageous little girl
Excellent performance...Brought you to beleive the sincerity of the author
Wows....What an insight into the functionings of another culture and the struggle for the education they find so essential to their future.
Addicted to Audible since 2009
The first two hours were really tough to get through but after that the book just gets better and better so don’t give up on it. The narrator, who I didn’t like at first, also grew on me as the book went on. Overall, it’s a great true story that touches the emotions but I must admit the names and places are so difficult to understand that the PDF is a must so that you could see some of those words, which may help you remember them.
Books make the world a better place
There is no other way to sum up this book other than 'humbling and awe-inspiring' and what's more is that this story is true. This is an account of one young girl’s struggle, tragedy and her ultimate triumph against a ruthless, irrational and unreasonable enemy. I absolutely loved the descriptive way in which Malala recounted her life in the town of Mingora in the Swat District of Pakistan's northwestern Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province. This book opens with a prologue, which is narrated by Malala herself. In spite of the terror she has been through, one can hear the compassion and optimism in her gentle child's voice. Her story is powerful and just as she loves knowledge she uses her book to carefully educate the reader/listener about her beloved land. We are introduced to the beautiful Swat valley as we become familiar with Malala's family and friends, her people, her culture and also the cruel, unreasoning extremists/Taliban who, through fear and terror, force their repressive rules upon her and her townspeople.
Malala is the girl who stood up for what she believed. With her father and family’s support she became known for her activism regarding the rights of girls/women to obtain an education; especially in the Swat Valley, where the Taliban banned girls from attending school and leaving their homes. Malala's outspokenness made her a target of these local Taliban, which caused her to be shot in the head at point-blank range. She nearly died but her assassin failed. Malala was critically injured but that did not stop her and in spite of the Taliban reiterating its death threats against her and her family, Malala has not faded away. She has not faltered and she has never compromised her dreams.
The crime against Malala was inhumane and horrifying but through it all she remains serenely defiant and optimistic. With wisdom beyond her years this young girl's words inspire and it is this spirit of Malala’s that has captured the hearts of people around the world.
I am so stirred by this gentle, optimistic, slight wisp of a girl who even now holds a book as her only ‘weapon’ against the army of Taliban who want her dead…and she is winning! It has taken a child to remind us once again that the pen is mightier than the sword and the world agrees because Malala was recently nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize; the youngest person to accomplish such a feat if she is chosen.
I will tell as many people as I can that they should read/hear this story because this amazing young girl is a rare and precious gift with a very relevant and important message/struggle. So who is Malala?...I am Malala!
For those of us lacking knowledge of the real people who live in the places reported on in the headlines, this author provides an excellent guide in plain speak. A remarkable story, an amazing young lady, an exceptional family.
Obviously, the author is still very young and writing a memoir at this age might seem odd. But I do think now it is the time for her to get her message out. To have a real effect in the world and also educate the western world that Islamic extremist don't represent Islam as a religion in general.
In general, I think the book is beautifully written. It intertwines her life with the events and explains how she is a product of her upbringing and her surroundings.
I listen to the Audible version of the book and often wished I had gotten the Kindle version instead, so I can highlight the lines and have easy access to the clippings of the most powerful lines.
I would recommend it to some of my friends who read for information rather than well crafted writing.
I think an abridged version might be better because this version had a lot of superflous detail.
I didn't care for the narrator's accent or the voice.
I don't usually read non-fiction so this book was outside of my usual genre and would help to explain why I didn't enjoy reading it.
I never had any intention of reading or listening to this book when it came out. Anything Oprah raves about drops down on my list of experiences I want to partake in.....and then one morning, I looked at Malala's face on the cover and changed my mind. And I was pleased to discover this wasn't the preachy or heavy-handed book about politics and the evils of the Taliban that I was afraid it would be.
Happily, this book is more about a brave young woman than about politics. And it's about her supportive parents, in a place and time when that wasn't always available to girls and young women. I was as much impressed by the life and actions of her father as I was about Malala herself, and I think he and his contributions have been overlooked much of the time. Malala obviously learned a lot from the way he treated his wife and daughter (very different from many others of his culture), the way he fought to build schools and teach children (male and female), and the way he spoke out, organized, and negotiated to make education for all a priority.
It's not surprising that a smart girl from a family like that would also grow up to cherish education and to speak her mind about the importance of everyone having those opportunities. What was surprising (to me) was that it didn't take away from her "normal-ness" as a pre-teen and teenaged girl.....and that comes through in the book. She talks about chatting with school friends about pop music and the Twilight books, and about fighting with her younger brothers over access to toys or a computer. About enjoying going on picnics, and playing cricket. Ordinary stuff that happens to young teenaged girls all over the world.
It's also clear from the book how much Malala loves her home and her country, even while she is saddened by what is going on there (mostly in respect to the rights of women and children, but also that some of her own countrymen have claimed her shooting was either a fake, or an excuse to move to the West). She is also quite clear that her views on Islam have not been changed by the efforts of other groups to instill a fringe fanaticism that is not reflective of true Islam. That while her world has been changed by the Taliban and what has happened to her, she has not.
The narration was wonderful, full of heart and emotion, and sounding young enough to actually be a 16 year old girl (which lends even more realism to the reading).