Review Blog

Sep 16 2019

Hasina by Michelle Aung Thin

cover image

Through my eyes series. Allen and Unwin, 2019. ISBN: 9781760637286.
(Age: 11+) Highly recommended, Myanmar, Rohingya, Islam, Buddhism, Survival. Through my eyes, a series of marvellous books set in contemporary war zones where children live in peril, offers a new book, Hasina, set in Myanmar. Here the Rohingya are refugees in their own country, many spilling into neighbouring Bangladesh to avoid the bloody raids by government forces. The noise of helicopters cuts though the reader when on page one, Hasina is transfixed by their attack, only taking shelter when her aunt Rukia pulls her inside. Her aunt and cousin have left their own southern village in search of shelter after riots four years go, the Buddhist Burmese turning against their Muslim neighbours.
But when the men come at night, murder in their eyes, Hasina, her brother Araf and cousin Ghadiya escape into the Rakhine forest, returning to the village days later where they are confronted by a quiet ruin, houses burnt down, their families gone.
The story of their survival is gripping and real, readers taking in the reasons for this conflict, nationalism mixed with greed, religion mixed with past grievances, power struggles taking precedence over conflict resolution and peace.
Michelle Aung Thin was born in Myanmar, in the year of the military coup and left with her parents when she was an infant. She grew up in Canada, has worked there and in London, now living in Australia.
Series editor and series creator Lyn White has extensive experience as a primary classroom teacher, teacher-librarian and EAL teacher. Her work with refugee children motivated her to create the acclaimed Through My Eyes series of books set in contemporary war zones. Lyn also created and edited the Through My Eyes - Natural Disaster Zones series that pays tribute to the courage and resilience of children who are often the most vulnerable in post-disaster situations. Lyn continues to teach EAL and is an education consultant and conference presenter. (Allen and Unwin series website)
Fran Knight

BUY IT ON booktopia
Archived Blog Entries