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Shabanu: Daughter of the Wind, Suzanne Fisher Staples

Few other novels have captured both the joy and the difficulties of the traditional nomadic culture of Pakistani desert dwellers and the lives of young women in that culture. Shabanu loves her work of tending her father's camels, and her skill and confidence have created in her a sense of independence not often found in the girls of her culture. Shabanu's willfulness brings tragedy to her sister; her outspokenness irritates her father as she strongly resists his plans for her marriage. Desperate, Shabanu runs away but is brought home again by her father to face life as a traditional daughter of a Muslim family.

Related Readings

from Desert Flower—autobiography by Waris Dirie and Cathleen Miller

from Camels for Uncle Sam—nonfiction by Diane Yancey

"My Mother Combs My Hair"—poem by Chitra Banerjee Divakurini

"Picture Bride"—poem by Cathy Song

"Marriage Is a Private Affair"—short story by Chinua Achebe

"Story of Wali Dād the Simple-Hearted"—Indian folktale edited by Andrew Lang

Study Guide (PDF)


McGraw-Hill / Glencoe