Review: I Am Malala

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I Am Malala: The Girl Who Stood Up for Education and Was Shot by the Taliban

by Malala YousafzaiChristina Lamb

 
Published October 8th 2013
by Little, Brown and Company 

Being a fellow Muslim, I was indeed intrigued and awed by the courage of this young girl who is courageous enough to state out what is wrong with her country and strive for education to be available for all.

Coming from a country where education is a main priority and females over populated the men in schools,colleges and universities, I was indeed aghast to discovered that in certain parts of the world, women are being treated as second class citizens. It brought a tear to my eyes, how Malala and her friends struggled to continue their education despite the horrors of war, earthquake and ongoing power struggle between the military and the Islamic militants in Pakistan. Certainly Malala owed much of her courage from her own father who is an education activist and is the owner of a private school. Their family background and details about the Swat Valley is described vividly in the book and readers get to know more about the places that she have lived and been to.

This book should be given out to every teens so that they would realised how important an education is and not to think of schooling so lightly. I felt so grateful to be able to live in a country where although the majority are Muslims, the women are not banned from attending schools and told to stay at homes to serve the men. Thank you, Malala for bringing attention to your plight. Isn’t it ironic that instead of silencing Malala with the gunshot, the Taliban instead have given her an even bigger voice that have been heard the world over.

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To Malay or not to Malay?

One of my dearest friend was commenting on how I read too much English books and not supporting local writers. Well…in my defense, I have to admit that my favourite genre is fantasy. Can you tell me a Malay author who writes fantasy books? Nada. Zilch. None. With the exception of the esteemed Ramlee Awang Murshid who writes horror ( mind you) and the occasional epic fantasy, the Malay literary landscape is practically devoid of fantasy writers. Don’t believe me? You want to google that one out. Malay fantasy writers. Nisah Hj. Haron was another fantasy writer I discovered when I was a teen but she hardly writes anymore. Is there no market for Malay fantasy writer? Sad indeed. Now, you cannot really force me to read a genre I detest. The occasional non- fiction is okay but I’m just too jaded to read another Malay novel about forced marriages.

Review: Rindu Ibu

ImageRindu Ibu is a collection of poems and poetry by A. Samad Said; Malaysia’s most renown poet and novelist. He is also bestowed upon with the title Sasterawan Negara.

There are 101 poems in this book and the central theme is childhood. I’m guessing that since the target audience seems to be youngsters then the language is not too hard to understand compared to A. Samad Said’s earlier novels which is a good move to encourage kids and teens to read and cultivate an interest in Malay literature.

My favourite is of course the last poem aptly entitled; Merindu Buku. For bookworms such as me, the poem is a beautiful reference to our love for books.

An excerpt from the poem:

Buku adalah denyut nadi utama,
penting bagi minda waras manusia;
dan buku juga gema fikir yang sakti,
nyaman dan manisnya sebuah simfoni.

Isn’t that simply astounding and wonderful? If you consider yourself a true Malaysian then you should have at least read one of A. Samad Said’s works. If not, why not start with this one?

What’s Up?

Sorry for not updating anything for such a long time. I even wondered does anyone even read my blog? Hehe…I’m too busy with my other blog, my studies and my rambunctios 3 year old. Haven’t read a Malay novel for such a long time. I’m so feeling guilty. But now that everyone is in Adam dan Hawa fever, I’m so tempted to check the book out. And no…my interest has nothing to do with Aaron Aziz…hehe.

What do you guys think of the drama or the book? Let me know.

Fresh from the oven

Aaahh…since my countless imaginary and half baked ‘novels’ are still under contruction, it’s nice to know that writing talents runs in the family..ehem..presenting DIINTAI RINDU by Junie Octovian. I was pleasantly surprised when my dearest aunt posted the cover of this book in her facebook page. It just makes you want to say TADA…hehe. As a neutral reviewer (I tried to be but well blood runs deep), I think the story can be a very good movie if it’s filmed. It’s got romance, action, fast and furious, drift, handsome hunks, (wonder where did my dearest aunt get all her ideas?) suspense, tragedy and happy ending. It’s about the many loves of Ain Zuraidah a successful, good looking and talented cook (damn she has it all) who fell in and out of love with several guys. Just shows that money doesn’t bring you happiness. But who can resist someone like Aaron?He’s too good to be true. Hey, if I could meet someone like that I would willingly sacrifice my beat up Gen2 just so we could accidentally bump on each other..hehehe

Review: Terzahir Di Sanubari

The problem with Malaysian literary is that it is too littered with romance novels, chick lits and well..more soppy love stories..I think we need more current Malaysian novels that shows strong modern women rather than heroines who ‘accidentally’ fell in love with a rich hero..yawn or nice kampung girl who fell for such prince charming..make it more interesting please..as an aspiring writer i dreamed about such characters.. interesting, witty and successful women who in their way in life fell in love..LOL

So with such positivism yikes..i read terzahir di sanubari…the lead heroine is interesting enough but the hero (ejal or is it nazif?) is blah..typical malay guy..damn are all malay guys like this?honestly the story is dragging at times..but all in all the story is trying to convey the advice that well love and friendship can intertwine..a good read

Verdict: 2 stars

My favourite Malay author

Did you know there’s an annual contest for most popular Malaysian book?  Well yeah..I know Malaysians hardly read…so in the spirit of patriotism I will be reviewing books by Malaysian authors.. my favourite for the moment are by a certain Nurul Syahida.

Aku Kan Novelis

I really like this one coz the language is not too over dramatic,simple and realistic…the storyline is quite interesting too. You have the heroine Safiah Shuhaimi or Safi obviously a writer with a writer’s block who’s helping her two bestfriends; Helmi and Iza survive the harsh world of romance but instead find love herself in the most unlikeliest candidate..blonde haired, rude and rempit Roul.

I nearly shed a tear coz there’s a twist near the end. Quite sad and touching. One of my favourites! Wonder why it’s not nominated in the Anugerah Pilihan Pembaca Berita Harian/Popular 2010?

Verdict: 5 stars of course!

Soalnya Hati

This could be Nurul Syahida first published novel..probably as the story is so-so simple and not much spark..it’s so obvious that the two protagonist will eventually fall for each other..at first being enemies..then friends finally lovers.

 I think the background for her novels are mostly targeted for educated malaysian women…modern malay women as the reference to Charlotte Bronte , Toltstoy (em is that the correct spelling?) might be not familiar to some..but hey I like it!

Verdict: 3 stars.

Last but not least is Plain Jane..the story of plain and slightly chubby Balkis whose indiferrence to the perception of other people grab the attention of Zaniel a rich and handsome guy who tried to change Balkis to his liking..but as usual love can be found in the most unlikely places..and sometimes is actually under your own nose..or eyes..ehem..