Malala Yousafzai: Warrior with Words

illus. by Susan L. Roth. 40p. (Warrior with Words). bibliog. notes. photos. Lee & Low. Feb. 2019. pap. $11.95. ISBN 9781620148389; ISBN 9781620147993.
RedReviewStarGr 3–5—The story of Malala Yousafzai is a powerful one: she is a living testament to personal strength and the value of education. The young human rights advocate is a true warrior with words, and this up-to-date biography introduces children to her story. For a generation of digital natives, a young woman who expresses herself and elicits change through a blog is both relatable and inspirational. Interspersed with quotes from Yousafzai, the text highlights the important events in her life. From the beginning of her blog until the day of the Taliban's attempt to assassinate her, and onward through her recovery and up to present day, the thread that weaves the story together is her unwavering support of the right each child has to an education. Roth's illustrations are composed of beautiful fabric-and-paper collages. There are gorgeous, bright colors throughout, but the Taliban and events involving them are depicted in muted tones of black and gray. The informational pages at the end of the book are not to be missed. Children can learn more about Pakistan, the Taliban, and The Malala Fund. There is even a section that encourages young readers to take action and provides information on how to do so.
VERDICT Available in both English and Spanish, this contemporary biography is excellent for conversations about the power of words, resilience, and the ability of one person to inspire meaningful change.

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