Your Stories

We love to hear your stories…

What does reading mean to you?…

Do you have a particular book that inspired you as a child?…

What was about the story that captured your imagination? (was it the story or the pictures or both?)

Please post your comments.  Every comment will get a reply and a book token where possible for every story we feature on our blog…

From Mrs Msulira…
I am a Malawian living in England.  I was born, and went to school in rural Malawi, and as a child, I had a big appetite for reading, but books were in very short supply. By age 9 I had read all the childrens books in what was meant to be my local and only library. Feeling frustrated, I resorted to reading the Bible from cover to cover, just so I could satisfy my thirst for stories. Having done that I had rare chances to read some international books like the wizard of OZ and Alice in wonderland. This was a wonderful thing and in that retrospect, it  helped me understand the world of children from other lands.
I understand that while I have done so well for myself, the reality for most Malawians living where I grew up and the children going to the schools I went to is very grim. As a result, I have a passion to ensure that children in Malawi have better access to books than I did.


From Pakistan / Afghanistan…
Just finished reading a true story of 1man’s mission to build 55 schools in remote parts of the Afghanistan/Pakistan border at the time of the rise of the Taliban. The book is called ‘Three Cups of Tea’ and details the amazing story of a modern day Indian Jones – Greg Mortenson. Very inspiring!
Below is an extract between Greg and the village elder on completion of the 1st school.   I think it sums up quite powerfully how many of us take an education for granted…
…Ali beckoned Mortensen to sit beside him. He picked up his dog-eared, grease-spotted Koran and held it before the flames. “Do you see how beautiful this Koran is?” Haji Ali asked…“I can’t read it” he said. “I can’t read anything. This is the greatest sadness in my life. I’ll do anything so the children of my village never have to know this feeling. I’ll pay any price so they have the education they deserve.”
From Burcu, Turkey…
I remember when I was small, I read a book I cannot recall the name now but I remember it gave me a completely different view of the world.  It was based in the Swiss Alps and I was amazed at how the people in the pictures lived and what they ate .   It was a children’s book and when the small girl got hungry, they would melt the cheese on the fire place.  I told my grandmother about the girl in the book and so we  both tried to do the same but because the cheese we had was very soft, we kept on burning it and making a terrible mess.  My mother would tell me not to do it again but I would keep trying secretly with my grandmother!  We had so many hours with her giggling.  It still puts a smile on my face to think how I was trying to be that girl and how my grandmother was my partner in crime.  
That book changed my life!  It taught me about different people in different parts of the world and how they lived.  They will now be some children in Africa who will now have a completeley different view of life thanks to the books they are reading.  They will have little memories that they can keep forever even after their loved ones have passed away.
A book is a new world of opportunities, especially for a child!

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