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One of the more moving details in I am Malala, the memoir Malala has written with journalist Christina Lamb, is that her mother was due to start learning to read and write on the day Malala was shot - 9 October 2012.
Malala Yousafzai's story begins with her parents being commiserated with after producing a baby girl. In their part of northern Pakistan, she says, rifle shots ring out in celebration of a baby boy's arrival. But there is no such fanfare for females: their destiny is to cook and clean, to be neither seen nor heard... So how did Malala, who barely warranted a mention in her family's genealogy, become destined for the history books as a powerful symbol for girls' universal right to an education? Her memoir I AM MALALA tells us how.
This memoir brings out her best qualities. You can only admire her courage and determination. Her thirst for education and reform appear genuine. She also has an air of innocence, and there is an indestructible confidence. She speaks with such poise that you forget Malala is 16.
Her story is astonishing.
The medical team that saved Malala; her own stoicism and resilience; the support of her family, now, again in exile, this time in Birmingham; Malala's level-headed resolve to continue to champion education and children's rights- these are all powerful reminders of the best in human nature. Much of the money Malala has been awarded has gone to the Malala fund (www.malalafund.org). "Please join my mission," she asks. It's vital that those of us who can, do.
Moving and illuminating
Malala's evocation of place, beautifully and lovingly described, and her paean to her father with his own passion for education, are fascinating. But so is her toughness. She describes seeing a young girl selling oranges, clearly unable to read or write: "I took a photo of her and vowed I would do everything in my power to help educate girls like her. This was the war I was going to fight." This remarkable book is part memoir, part manifesto. I feel enriched from having read it. I also feel humbled. Our obsession with school performance is suddenly marginalised by a story in which education, quite literally, proves a matter of life and death.
Malala's voice has the purity, but also has the rigidity, of the principled. Whether she is being a competitive teenager and keeping track of who she bet in exams (and by how much) or writing a blog for the BBC that catapulted her on to the international stage - "We were learning how to struggle. And we were learning how powerful we are when we speak" - or talking about Pakistan's politicians ("useless"), Malala is passionate and intense. Her faith and her duty to the cause of girls' education is unquestionable, her adoration for her father- her role model and comrade in arms- is moving and her pain at the violence carried out in the name of Islam is palpable.
Part memoir, part mission statement. I am Malala recounts the early life of Malala Yousafzai, the Pakistani schoolgirl who spoke out against the Taliban and was shot for her defiance. Her recovery, bravery and stoicism - and her father, Ziauddin - make for shocking and moving reading.
The world is entranced by the story of the 15-year-old girl who was shot in the head by the Taliban because she wished to go to school. Flown over to Birmingham for emergency surgery, she has emerged as an elegant and brave spokesgirl for a better future, to the extent that she almost won the Nobel peace prize and has become a sought-after speaker. This book should inspire girls the world over.
Malala's story is gripping, tragic and yet ultimately full of hope. Faced with religious fundamentalism, suicide bombers and death threats her courage, stoicism and wisdom shine through at every turn. The bond she shares with her father - an equally courageous man whose views on equality are at odds with many of his countrymen - is also very movingly described.
The media didn't really take on board the fact, which emerges from her book I AM MALALA, co-written with Christina Lamb, that every single day for her was a protest. She would hide her pens and books under her clothes on the way to school and ignore the Taliban's threats. She is a role model, not just a victim.
Not only powerful, but also very instructive about the recent history of Pakistan and the pressures of everyday life there. One finishes the book full of admiration both for Malala, and for her father, who has clearly inspired her.
Rejoice! It was the year that a Pakistani teenager who stood up to the Taliban became a celebrity, and one with a real story to tell. What a breath of fresh air in a genre crowded out by middle-aged TV personalities. Malala Yousafzai invigorated the "all about me" genre with I AM MALALA, with Christina Lamb, a tale of immense courage and conviction which begins as she is shot for campaigning for the rights of girls to an education.
I AM MALALA is a rich and riveting account of a short, brave and admirable life.
Inspirational and powerful
The story of the girl shot by the Taliban for speaking up for women's education is one of idealism and stubborn courage, and a reminder that women's rights and many children's rights to education are continually threatened.
She has the heart and courage of a lioness and is a true inspiration.
I felt both humbled and inspired by I am Malala by Malala Yousafzai with Christina Lamb, the remarkable story of the young educational campaigner from Pakistan's Swat valley, who miraculously survived after bring shot by the dark forces of fundamentalism. Deftly written with the help of an award-winning foreign correspondent, this is a must-read for anyone seeking to understand the tortured politics of the Taliban in the North-West Frontier.
It's hard to believe that this intelligent, charismatic and very poised young women is still just 16 years old. There is so much hope and expectation resting on those inspirational small shoulders.
One finishes the book full of admiration both for Malala, and for her father, who has clearly inspired her.
In her inspirational and powerful autobiography, Malala tells her own extraordinary story.
The Pakistani schoolgirl shot by the Taliban has astonished the world with her courage and determination to fight for education and equal rights for women.
The inspirational story of the girl who single-handedly showed that the pen is mightier that the sword should be required reading for people of all ages.
The book is equally Malala's story of love for her family and respect for her father who comes across as an inspirational figure. It is a book of courage and endurance in the face of tremendous odds. I am Malala should be read by everyone who sees education as an agency of liberation for both boys and girls and an indispensable weapon in the struggle against ignorance and oppression.
Read the story of the remarkable young woman who refused to be silenced after she was shot in the head by the Taliban on a school bus in 2012. At 16, she has become a global symbol of peaceful protest and the youngest ever nominee for the Nobel Peace Prize.
Did you see Malala on the Daily Show with Jon Stewart? If not, Google it, and then buy this book. It's hard to find the words to describe what this girl has done, not only for young women everywhere, but also for the world in which it feels like the bad guys always win. I'm choked up just writing this.
Honest, insightful and piercingly wise, this is the celebrity memoir to give your teenaged daughter this Christmas.
Malala has shown extraordinary courage in campaigning for the millions of girls who are still denied an education. Uplifting and inspirational.
This courageous and extraordinary young woman has become something of a world symbol. Her stand for education of women in her own native Pakistan was a courageous one, but it should not lead Western readers to think that such things only happened over there. She and her family now live abroad, but as her speeches and appearances show, she continues her campaign for the right of young people everywhere to fully realise their potential.
For sheer inspiration read I am Malala.