By Suzanne Fisher Staples
(Laurel Leaf, Mass Market Paperback, 9780679865698, 336pp.)
Publication Date: May 16, 1995
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The world of Newbery Honor book Shabanu is vividly re-created in this novel of a young Pakistani woman's heartbreaking struggle against the tyranny of custom and ancient law. Shabanu, now a mother at 18, faces daily challenges to her position in her husband's household, even as she plans for her young daughter's education and uncertain future. Then, during a visit to the haveli, their home in the city of Lahore, Shabanu falls in love with Omar, in spite of traditions that forbid their union.
Suzanne grew up in Pennsylvania, and was a liberal arts major in college. After graduation, she had various jobs, all having something to do with writing and research. Eventually, she landed in Hong Kong, where she became a reporter for United Press International. For six years, Suzanne lived and worked in China, and in 1979, UPI offered Suzanne her own bureau in South Asia. Several extraordinary events happened during her tenure there, including the taking of American hostages in Iran, and the Civil War in Afghanistan. Suzanne also traveled extensively with Indira Gandhi during this time. In 1985, Suzanne went to Pakistan to conduct a study on poor rural woman. It was during this time that she was inspired to write her first children's book, Shabanu: Daughter of the Wind . A sequel to Shabanu , Haveli , soon followed.
Currently, Suzanne Fisher Staples lives with her husband, Wayne Harley, in Mount Dora, Florida, where she continues to write.
“Again, Staples imbues Shabanu and her beautiful, brutally repressive world with a splendid reality that transcends the words on the page. Admirers of the intelligent and courageous Shabanu will thirst for more.”—Starred, Kirkus Reviews
“Engrossing . . . a swiftly moving adventure story, set in modern Pakistan.”—School Library Journal, Starred
“Staples brews a potent mix here. . . . Haveli will hold readers with rapt attention.”—Booklist, Starred
“Staples’s portrayal of Pakistan is remarkably even-handed: she acknowledges the society’s inequities while celebrating its beauty and warmth. Intoxicating.”—Publishers Weekly, Starred