Thursday, April 28, 2016

"I will always write back"

I will always write back by Caitlin Alifirenka and Martin Ganda first landed in my hands last year. As I started reading I was transfixed by the story that unfolded in it's pages. It's a story of two pen pals, Caitlin an all American teenager and Martin a top of his class student in Zimbabwe. The lives that they lived couldn't be more different, yet they develop a bond over their letters that changes both their lives forever.

I don't want to give too much of the story away, but it's a tale of stark contrasts. The carefree life of Caitlin is in contrast to Martin's life that is a constant struggle. After reading it I thought it would be the perfect book to read aloud to my children (7 &10). I'm always looking for ways to open their eyes to how others live, not to take for granted what they have. They hung on every word, listening to the life that Martin lead they couldn't quite believe how different it was to their own. They were engrossed in the story and the lives of Caitlin and Martin, by the end of the book they felt like friends. I did edit a few passages as Caitlin mentions a few teenage topics that weren't quite the messages I wanted to give to my children, like hopping into a car with a stranger and lying to her mum! I don't think these few passages detract from the overall heartwarming story or the true life outcome of these amazing people - just a warning if you plan on reading aloud to your children.

It's a story that needs to be told and held up as example of if everyone helped someone just a little bit, how amazing the world could be! Little good deeds are often easy to dish out and make a big difference! It's certainly made my family look at little ways that we can help others. It's a fabulous read!

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