Review Blog

Dec 15 2012

Blasphemy by Asia Bibi

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Virago, 2012. ISBN 9781844088881.
(Age: 13 +) Highly recommended. Blasphemy is the true story of Asia Bibi, a Pakistani woman who was unfairly sentenced to death for ridiculous claims of blasphemy. In 2009, after a long hot day working outside, she goes to a well and takes a long drink of water, then offers it to some of her fellow workers. Suddenly someone cries out that the water is reserved for Muslims, and by drinking from it, Asia - who is Christian - has tainted it. An argument ensues, and then someone cries out that she has broken the blasphemy law, a crime punishable by death in Pakistan. She was sent to prison and her family has had to go into hiding from extremists. Those who stood up for her were brutally murdered. This is her story.
Blasphemy is an intriguing, well-written book which tells the very sad, yet inspiring story of Asia Bibi, a Pakistani woman who has been treated unfairly and harshly due to the blasphemy law of Pakistan. This story is taken from interviews with Asia herself, who talked in the utmost secrecy. She talks openly about her religion and how much she misses her family, and discusses her experiences in the prison and being targeted by Muslim extremists who believe she should be put to death.
It's a harrowing story to read, but one that is also hopeful. Asia is still in prison, but hopefully this story will have a happy ending.
I highly recommend this book.
Rebecca Adams

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