Wednesday, May 16, 2007

The Breadwinner

Author: Deborah Ellis

First line: "I can read that letter as well as Father can," Parvana whispered into the folds of her chador.

Why you should read this book: In prose both simple and piercing, Ellis tells the story of 11-year-old Parvana, living in Kabul under the Taliban regime. When her father is arrested without explanation, it is up to Parvana to cut her hair, dress like a boy, and go to work in the marketplace to support her family. Brutally apt descriptions of the necessities of survival make this a powerful work for children and adults.

Why you shouldn't read this book: Scenes of grave-robbery, hand-chopping, and unwarranted beatings may be difficult for sensitive readers.

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