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I Am Nujood, Age 10 and Divorced    by Nujood Ali & Delphine Minoui order for
I Am Nujood, Age 10 and Divorced
by Nujood Ali
Order:  USA  Can
Three Rivers, 2010 (2010)
Softcover, e-Book

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* *   Reviewed by Mary Ann Smyth

Imagine being a ten-year-old girl married to a thirty year-old man! Who insists on the conjugal bed she is his wife, after all.

Despite the fact that the legal age for marriage in Yemen was fifteen at the time, Nujood was, in essence, sold to her husband by her family for petty reasons. When he began beating her, she decided she had had enough and traveled to Sana'a to talk to a judge. She had been advised to see a judge and so she did. But it was not as easy as it sounds.

Nujood's story, which I will not add to here, is not that different from that of other young girls in Yemen. It's a patriarchal society where the commands of fathers and brothers are expected to be obeyed without question. Nujood had the temerity to question and then to do something about it.

What courage that must have taken. She became the beacon for other girls in the same situation. Because of her not taking it any more, times are changing. At least to some extent.

The story was told to Delphine Minoui and then written as though in Nujood's words. It's a little hard to believe that an uneducated girl of ten could articulate the words used here. But that is excusable. The content is clear. And repellent. I have to admit, this book raised my hackles, and makes me very thankful that I live where I do, as do my beautiful daughters and granddaughters.

Take a deep breath and read I Am Nujood, Age 10 and Divorced. This is a slim volume that packs a very big punch.

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