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Thursday, September 16, 2010

BBAW: Yasmin's Hammer by Ann Malaspina

Hi there!
BBAW 2010 is in full swing!  With today and tomorrow being the last of the "official" fun (for we know that the world of reading is ever growing), I had to share another bookish gem (as promised) with you right now that shines the book light on our shared love of reading.  So, in true Satisfaction for Insatiable Readers fashion....let's get on with the show!

Post two of the day belongs to another children's book, short on words, long on illustrations, but full of meaning.  Speaking right to the heart of the matter, both author and illustrator work together to create a wonderful harmony between their crafts, taking the reader along on a journey fit for all ages.  Today's book of choice is....

illustrated by

Yasmin is a young girl with a dream, though where it begins would be hard to guess for most.  Her dream has the humblest of starts....a deeply held desire to READ.  Even at her young age, she understands that this basic skill can open doors, especially in her world.  Each day begins and ends the same as her family struggles to make a life in the crowded streets of Bangladesh but with a little luck and perseverance from her family, the stars for which she is reaching are not so far away.

How can one not love a book that emphasizes the importance of being able to read? Honestly, it's one skill that can make or break you in so many ways. Whether utilized for work or pleasure, it's a skill, and for some (*raises hand*) a passion, that can last a lifetime.  This book explores the lives of those whose quest to obtain this basic skill is harder than most. Focusing on Yasmin and her family, we watch as they struggle to find some way to maintain an adequate living environment with the goal of one day sending their girls to school so they can drink of the knowledge they have desired.  Her family may be short on money but they have enough love between them to rope the moon should they desire a visit...something that hopefully we can all say at one point or another in our own lives. 

A good story at face value as well as a working tool to bring to light the severity of the educational situation in other countries, this book is both story and lesson all in one; certainly gives you something to think about the next time you take reading for granted.  In fact, the author gives you some things to ponder just after the story as well.  The 'Afterword' provided at book's end gives you a little insight into the current conditions of the People's Republic of Bangladesh (where this story is set), and how even though they are still developing as a country, they are still behind in many ways.  Ggood majorities of the people live in poverty and thus children are often put to work to help families survive.  Though things are changing, there is still quite a ways to go.  Several organizations are listed just after this informative section in a "how you can help" piece as well as other suggested reading for those with inquiring minds.  One last bit of satiate the desire for learning, there is a short glossary and pronunciation guide as well....just in case you need a helping hand through a regional word or two.

So go ahead....take a walk in Yasmin's world and have your eyes opened to the wonderful privilege that you now enjoy....reading.  Review copy received courtesy of Hannah Ehrlich at LEE and LOW Books.  (THANKS!)  For more information on their varied catalogue, visit their website or follow along on Twitter!

Check back tomorrow as we close out BBAW 2010 with a bang and get a little personal via the books we me, it'll be fun!

Until next time....happy reading!


Dorothy Dreyer said...

Great review! And yeah, we rarely think about how privileged we are to be able to read.

Amused said...

This looks like such a great children's book!

Emidy (Une Parole) said...

I love books about reading, and I'm so happy you reviewed this one because I haven't heard of it! Books with illustrations are so nice, and it's great to hear that they compliment the story. Lovely review!

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