Review: I am Malala by Malala Yousafzai, Christina Lamb

Category: Autobiography

Published: 2013

Read: March 2017

Score: 5/5

Synopsis: (Goodreads) I come from a country that was created at midnight. When I almost died it was just after midday.
When the Taliban took control of the Swat Valley in Pakistan, one girl spoke out. Malala Yousafzai refused to be silenced and fought for her right to an education.
On Tuesday, October 9, 2012, when she was fifteen, she almost paid the ultimate price. She was shot in the head at point-blank range while riding the bus home from school, and few expected her to survive.
Instead, Malala’s miraculous recovery has taken her on an extraordinary journey from a remote valley in northern Pakistan to the halls of the United Nations in New York. At sixteen, she has become a global symbol of peaceful protest and the youngest-ever Nobel Peace Prize laureate.
I Am Malala is the remarkable tale of a family uprooted by global terrorism, of the fight for girls’ education, of a father who, himself a school owner, championed and encouraged his daughter to write and attend school, and of brave parents who have a fierce love for their daughter in a society that prizes sons.

Review: What can I say about this book? It has changed my life. Malala is an incredible and wonderful human being who shows up the spirit and love and passion for life will help you survive.

There is not much I can do to sum up the book. Everyone knows her name and the fact that because she spoke out about education and women’s rights in a country that doesn’t have them she was shot by the Taliban when she was just 15 years old. It shows the cowardice and the fear that people like Malala puts in the Taliban when they have to shut her up in that horrific manner. She survived and started a foundation in her name to help women around the world and provide education opportunities. Obviously she is here for a reason.

What I really enjoyed about this book is the fact it’s not just about her. It’s also about her family and her life in Swat. How they lived from day-to-day. Who her parents are and why they are the way they are. How they met and what her extended family is like. It’s interesting to see how they live and how it’s different from the ways I know. How they are very closer and if anyone visits their house..if it be a big house or a shack, they would give them the shirts off their back if they had too. She also talks about her faith and Islam and how it’s been twisted by sick people for their own personal gains. 

It’s hard sometimes to read what people can do to each other but that is the reality of the world. It’s cold and harsh and unforgiving.

I think everyone should read this book. For a better understanding of life in other countries and a better understanding of the religion of Islam. I look forward to anything else she might come out with as well as following her on her path to make a better world.

I won’t give any other recommendations as I feel there isn’t another book quite like this. Or if there is I don’t know of them and I can’t in good faith just recommend without being certain.

#TBT Review: Call The Midwife A Memoir of Birth, Joy, and Hard Times (The Midwife Trilogy #1) by Jennifer Worth

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Category: Biography

Published: 2002

Read: April 2015

Score: 4/5

Synopsis: (Goodreads) At the age of twenty-two, Jennifer Worth leaves her comfortable home to move into a convent and become a midwife in post war London’s East End slums. The colorful characters she meets while delivering babies all over London-from the plucky, warm-hearted nuns with whom she lives to the woman with twenty-four children who can’t speak English to the prostitutes and dockers of the city’s seedier side-illuminate a fascinating time in history. Beautifully written and utterly moving, The Midwife will touch the hearts of anyone who is, and everyone who has, a mother.

Review: This was a surprising book and I did love it for the most part. Each chapter is a story in and of itself of the different people who Jennifer Worth lives with and meets. There are characters in both the convent and in the East End slums. 4d9aa60b55b7dc29478f80d027ec68fb

I must say that i did learn a lot about this time period and area in London. I did not know a lot about it and it was enlightening, and sad and hopeful at the same time. The people were a different group of people who had it hard…very hard but still survived…and pumped out babies. It’s also goes to show how wonderful birth control is.

You meet a lot of different people. Loving couples who can’t seem to stop producing. Women who are in abusive relationship and can barely take care of themselves and their children. Kids who are loved and taken care of and kids who live in squalor. You also meet some great people from an older nun who just causes trouble to another midwife who is so big and clumsy you can’t help but love her.

1412245875496_wps_5_E1_London_August_1969_C_NI know it was turned in to a television show but I have not watched it and no plans on it either. As a book it’s a great read, as I said you learn things. It’s not long and not big and the writing is done well. I went on to read the other books…and maybe one day might review them too 😉

For anyone who is a mother or has a mother I think you will love this book. I also think that anyone who likes a good biography this one is for you.

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Review: Trash, A True Story by Laurie Anne Hoover

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Category: Biography

Published: 2015

Read: 2016

Score: 5/5

Synopsis: (Goodreads) Flipping through a bag of old photographs, Lynn Hellers relives her traumatic childhood growing up in the low-income row houses of Kingston, Ontario, in the 1970s and 80s. Against the backdrop of the dramatic social and political upheaval of the era, Lynn’s young life is dominated by crushing poverty and the violent explosions of her alcoholic and abusive father. When his anger wasn’t vented on their mother, he turned to Lynn and her younger siblings, who quickly learned to keep their thoughts to themselves. Amidst the burden of survival, Lynn’s coming of age is further complicated by a profound crisis of faith and heartbreaking confusion around her sexuality. Her only respite came from her caring and gentle maternal grandparents, who offered a safe haven and encouraged her to pursue her passion for visual art as well as a determination to carve out a life for herself.

Review: This is a tough but honest read. I am well aware of Kingston and have been there many times and it’s always different when you are reading a book where you actually know all the places mentioned. It makes it more real and it makes it feel more honest because you’ve been there.

I really liked how this book was laid out as someone who is telling the story while looking at the photo’s. The way they were described you could actually see the picture as it was being described. Kingston

The story starts out when Lynn is a young girl. She has three younger siblings and she is the oldest. Her father is a raging alcoholic with clear and present anger issues and other substance abuse problems. Her mother also suffered from different substance abuse issues and is abused by the father herself, as well as ignores what happens to her children. There is a lot of hitting, name calling, pushing around, and sexual assault. There is no food to eat some of the time, no love between parents and kids, and strange situations like a Monkey in the backyard.

There were parts of this story that is very hard to read. Some parts where Lynn could have ended up raped but due to the kindness of others was saved. There were parts you couldn’t put down the book because you wanted to know what happened. They all had to live with this without help of social services. This was also a time where there was not as much help or places to escape when you were having a problem at home. I wanted to jump in this book and hug all of these kids and tell them it would be okay. They are strong and bigger than this.

There was a lot of hope in this book. Despite the odds most of the kids came out okay and went on to live normal happy lives. I am really happy there was an update at the end of this book as I was curious to see what happened to the other kids. I have met the author and she is a wonderful lady. It’s a very brave thing to come out and talk about her experiences.

I recommend this book to anyone who like a biography and doesn’t mind reading about hard times that happen to other people this is for you. I wouldn’t give it to anyone younger than 16 as it is descriptive.

Overall a great book and I am very happy that I was able to read it.

Review: Brain on Fire (My Month of Madness) By Susannah Cahalan

downloadCategory: Biography

Published: 2012

Read: 2016

Score: 5/5

Synopsis: (Goodreads) One day, Susannah Cahalan woke up in a strange hospital room, strapped to her bed, under guard, and unable to move or speak. Her medical records—from a month-long hospital stay of which she had no memory—showed psychosis, violence, and dangerous instability. Yet, only weeks earlier she had been a healthy, ambitious twenty-four year old, six months into her first serious relationship and a sparkling career as a cub reporter.
Susannah’s astonishing memoir chronicles the swift path of her illness and the lucky, last-minute intervention led by one of the few doctors capable of saving her life.

Review: This was an astonishing and remarkable book and even better becase the person who is ill is the one who wrote it. You can tell she is a reporter as this shines through the pages as she has to figure out what she doesn’t remember from being sick, which is a lot. 36_lost-month-of-madness-1

She is a bright, happy 24-year-old women and the only thing that has ever happened to her was melanoma which was caught and treated very early. So to go from someone who is healthy and just started out in life to seizures, manic episodes, paranoia, insomnia and no sleep is very scary. This can happen to anyone and as the book says has probably been happening to women throughout the ages. maxresdefault

The book starts when she first starts to notice symptoms. It would have been nice for a little context of her before, but you can’t win them all. Than you move with Susannah throughout the illness to the point where she is so sick she can’t talk and is having daily seizures. FInally the doctor that saves her life comes in to the picture and after many tests finds out what is wrong with her and helps treat her. She is very very lucky! Not only that she was able to be treated but that she could afford to be treated.

I like the fact that she also got accounts from other people who were there during this time because she doesn’t remember anything from the hospital. She also includes things she wrote and did herself while in certain states. It shows the mind of someone who is not really in the world, but in her own due to her psychosis.

I read this book in about three days. I couldn’t put it down and couldn’t wait to come home and finish it. It is scary and real all at the same time. To know that we are all so vulnerable and at any moment things can change.

Anyone who loves a good mystery would like this book, as well as anyone who likes a good bio. It’s an easy read in the sense of writing and a smaller book so it shouldn’t take you long. It’s one I can see myself picking up to read again, that is how much of a good book this is.

They are also making a movie, so pick this one up before because it’s going to be a good movie! 20150709073427d084b