Saturday, 6 February 2016

I Am Malala // inspirational is not a strong enough word

Title: I Am Malala: How One Girl Stood Up For Education and Changed the World
Author: Malala Yousafzai with Patricia McCormick
Genre: Autobiography
Warnings: references to terrorism, one scene with guns
Rating: 5 stars
Goodreads Review | Book Depository

Read as part of the Diverse Reads Book Challenge.

An ebook copy of this book was provided to me via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

Malala Yousafzai is an extraordinary human being who I have admired for years. Her work towards promoting education for women caused gained her much media attention, and as a result she gained attention from the Taliban, who shot her in 2012 on her way home from school. Since then, Malala has continued to work towards education across the globe through peace talks and The Malala Fund, and became the youngest winner of the Nobel Peace Prize.

This book should not be confused with Malala's book of a very similar name (I Am Malala: The Girl Who Stood Up For Education and Was Shot by the Taliban - with Christina Lamb), which is aimed at a more general audience. Although I am unable to compare the two as I have not read the one published prior to this, I can still say that this is without a doubt one of the greatest books I have ever read.

Autobiographies never appealed much to me, but when I first heard Malala's name I knew this had to be the exception. This young woman has achieved so much in her 18 years that no one could ever imagine possible. She did not waver in fear of the consequences of what she was promoting, and continued to stay strong in the most impossibly difficult of times.

The writing style was simplistic and flowed beautifully in a way that made reading it a pleasure. Malala's voice shone through the pages and everything felt so genuine that makes her story all the more incredible. I have read other reviews saying that the first version of this book was very politically heavy, which I would have struggled to absorb, but this edition would be easy to take in no matter how much the reader was informed about the politics of Pakistan, yet not once did it feel as though the book was watered down for a younger audience.

I wish to describe this book as inspirational, but I can never be able emulate everything about Malala that makes her so admirable. Malala's actions made me more aware of the way I think, and I believe it has done the same for many others. Malala was not just the girl who was shot by the Taliban - she was the girl who changed the world. If one thing can be taken from this book, it is that we should all strive to do the same even in the smallest of ways.

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