Words in the Dust
Written by Trent Reedy
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The Lovereading4Kids comment
A Lovereading4Kids 'Debut of the Year 2011' selection.
11+. A touching and thought-provoking story set in contemporary Afghanistan, Words in the Dust uncovers how the lives of women and girls are changing. Zulaikha, a younger sister born with a disfiguring cleft palate, captures the details of the life of drudgery of herself and her older sister Zeynab as they help their step mother look after the house and their younger brothers. Growing up under the Taliban, these girls have had had no chance of education; instead they think only of making a good marriage. But, the arrival of the American soldiers brings huge changes. Can Zulaikha’s face really be fixed? And can she have an education? So much suddenly seems possible. In contrast, Zeynab’s marriage, arranged by their father and thought to be a great opportunity, goes horribly wrong.
Words in the Dust by Trent Reedy
Zulaikha hopes. She hopes for peace, now that the Taliban have been driven out of Afghanistan. She hopes for a better relationship with her hard stepmother. And she hopes one day even to go to school. Then she meets Meena, who offers to teach her the poetry she once taught her mother. And the Americans come to the village, promising not just new opportunities, but surgery to mend Zulaikha's face. But can Zulaikha dare to hope they will come true? Trent Reedy's breathtaking first novel is based on his experiences serving with the US Army in Afghanistan and, in a land where hidebound traditions clash with an emerging desire for freedom, offers humanity and hope.
An interview with Trent Reedy:
"Remarkable ... It's a real page-turner. Trent Reedy has evoked the sights and sounds of Afghanistan with a sure hand. Zulaikha is a compelling character who lingers in the mind long after one has finished reading the novel." - Elizabeth Laird, author of Crusade and Kiss the Dust
"A brilliant first book." Jamila Gavin, author of Coram Boy
"A striking and beautifully told story.” Los Angeles Times
About the Author
More books by Trent Reedy
Frances Lincoln Childrens Books an imprint of Frances Lincoln Publishers Ltd
1st September 2011
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