Had to put this book down at certain places, pause and just reflect, take a little time out of mind. So powerful, so intense. I hope I never forget this remarkable woman's name, she is the embodiment of everyone who has their own dreams, tell themselves it is not possible, she is an inspiration. Based on a real person, this is her odds defying story, though it is heartbreaking. Puts things in perspective in my own country, why I think we need to read books like these no matter how hard. Even at their worst, in this country, we are so lucky.
Books like these remind me of that and also how many people are struggling throughout the world. Always remember. ARC from publisher.
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View all 16 comments. Shelves: favorites , must-read. To be born as a female in a war zone area , ruled by criminals ,thieves and religious extremists is a real catastrophe To be born as a female with great soul and big dreams in such area is a greater catastrophe Even the ordinary and simple things that people everywhere else take for granted and the most simple creatures are free to do like running , swimming and singing will be prohibited and tabooed I know exactly what it means , I was born in such an area.
What it was hard for me to understand how was To be born as a female in a war zone area , ruled by criminals ,thieves and religious extremists is a real catastrophe To be born as a female with great soul and big dreams in such area is a greater catastrophe Even the ordinary and simple things that people everywhere else take for granted and the most simple creatures are free to do like running , swimming and singing will be prohibited and tabooed I know exactly what it means , I was born in such an area.
What it was hard for me to understand how was such a young , simple lady be able to fight for her dreams? From where did she get her strength? While reading , I could not hinder my tears from jumping on my cheek like what those illegal immigrants was doing jumping from the escape boat to the sea water hoping to catch one of the ropes.
I learned a lot from Samia , She was such a strong and brave warrior. View 2 comments. Don't Tell Me You're Afraid is the fictionalized account of her journey to these games and her attempted journey to the London Olympics. When you see these smaller, possibly war torn countries during the Olympic Opening Ceremonies I don't think we realize what the athletes must experience to compete on this level.
This book truly helped me understand why these athletes should be appreciated and recognized. I enjoyed this story. This book came out this year Although it is fiction, it is based on a true story of a Somalian girl who was trying to get to the Olympics. She actually did make it to the Olympics in Beijing, but her journey to the Olympics in London was interrupted. The MC was splayed open in a way that only the innocent can be, who has nothing to hide.
It was a raw look at the workings of a girl who had dreams, hopes and an amazing ability, but was held back by a Wow It was a raw look at the workings of a girl who had dreams, hopes and an amazing ability, but was held back by a war torn country. It was really quite beautiful.
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I loved the writing. This is one of those stories that touches you and is unforgettable. Some of this stabbed at my heart. This novel is based on the true story of Samia Yusuf Omar, a Somalian athlete who died on April 2nd aged 21, drowning while trying to reach the ropes tossed out from an Italian vessel as she attempted to get to England and participate in the London Olympic Games. It is an affecting and heart wrenching story about the determination of one spirited woman who never gave up her hopes or dreams despite the suffering and oppression she faced daily, particularly as she began her dehumanising journ This novel is based on the true story of Samia Yusuf Omar, a Somalian athlete who died on April 2nd aged 21, drowning while trying to reach the ropes tossed out from an Italian vessel as she attempted to get to England and participate in the London Olympic Games.
It is an affecting and heart wrenching story about the determination of one spirited woman who never gave up her hopes or dreams despite the suffering and oppression she faced daily, particularly as she began her dehumanising journey as a refugee. I was attracted to this book as it popped up on my Twitter feed the same day my friend left for Israel to run a charity half marathon - her first big race, her first flight in twenty years and her first trip away from her young family.
It just seemed fitting that I should read this following some of the conversations we recently had. I thought the cover was also quite stunning. The story begins when Samia is 8 years old and Ali, her best friend born only 3 days apart from her and living in the rooms next to her own family, asks her to be his "sister". Their friendship is deep and bound with the loyalty akin to that of a brother and sister.
Ali is described as wearing shorts that were worn by all his brothers before ending up on him, he sleeps and lives in one room with the rest of his family and he is a Darod - an enemy of the Abgals to which Samia belongs. She lives in two rooms with her 6 other brothers and sisters and her parents.
They have only known war as it began 8 weeks before they were born and as they race through the streets they barely notice the way the walls of buildings are riddled with bullet holes or demolished by bombs. Ali and Samia are athletes - runners.
Samia wants to be a champion and sleeps with a picture of Mo Farah above her bed. They run at night, through the streets where garbage is burned, navigating their way through charred remains and smouldering heaps of ashes, ignoring the curfew. They avoid the beach as this the militia's favourite spot - they can have a straight shot.
As the novel begins with the children at such a young age and seen from their point of view, it almost protects the reader from the full impact of the harrowing situation. It's an accepted backdrop to their lives. As Samia says, "It doesn't matter to us. Let them shoot each other in the street, it had nothing to to do with us.
War couldn't take away what was important. Him to me and me to him. Ali and Samia recognise one of the older boys to be someone they know and this affects Ali deeply. He stops running. Samia does not. She continues, even more determined to become an athlete, and after a while Ali returns and becomes her coach. Following a further devastating turn of events involving both Ali and Samia's fathers, there is a meeting held at Samia's house.radiodaysmuseum.com/components/sy-azithromycin-y.php
They discuss peace and hope while "outside there was a war. War is only a result of hatred that makes people blind and content only with blood. We are all Somoli brothers regardless of tribe and clans. The novel moves forward, several years at a time. The Al-Shabaab gain more power. Life becomes more impossible, particularly for women. Music is barred, cinema closed, men are not allowed to wear shorts and have to shave their heads.
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Women are not allowed to do anything and had to wear black burkas. She talks to her photo of Mo Farah. She wants to hope. She wants to win. Her first big race offers her freedom and an irresistible euphoria which feeds her desire to succeed even further. Her participation in a competition and the necessary travel it involved becomes symbolic. The running is her freedom. She wins. She is the fastest woman in her country.
Words such as champion, glittering, dazzling, celebration and pride scatter the pages. She receives letters from Muslim women and realises she is becoming a legend for thousands of women and their hopes and dreams. Following her sister's recent journey to Europe by boat, Samia sets out to join her. This is a very traumatic part of the story due to the risks, danger, horrifying reality of people trafficking and the suffering endured.
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It is made bearable by Samia's inspirational ability to still feel hope and her determination to live. It is a dramatic section; moving, urgent, poignant and tragic. It is an important story even though it is a hard one to read.
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Much more so as it is a true story. The closing lines of the novel are powerful. Thank you to NetGalley for an advanced copy of this book in return for a fair and honest review.
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. Unfortunately, the story takes a turn for the worst when Samia is trying to escape her war-torn country as a refugee. This is an incredibly powerful book that had me cheering and crying! A perfect pick for the lead up to this year's Olympics, this book sheds light on the stren "Don't Tell Me You're Afraid" is the novelization of the life of Samia Yusuf Omar, a Somali runner who competed in the Olympics and had her eyes set on attending the Olympics as a better, more competitive runner.
A perfect pick for the lead up to this year's Olympics, this book sheds light on the strength of the human spirit as well as the horrible humanitarian situation in Somalia. Before reading this book, I had never heard of Samia before but after reading the book, I had a very difficult time seeing how her plight is not more well known. The book covers from her very young life as a girl training to run with her childhood best friend by her side in a place that is constantly under attack. I loved the way that the author wrote the book from Samia's point of view, which really allowed me to get into the story.
As a keen follower of world events, I thought that I had a pretty good grasp on what was happening in Somalia but this book shed a lot of light for me. It showed me just how wide spread and invasive the violence and terror of Al Shabaab was and still is in Somalia.