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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.
Gr 6-9‘A powerful story, skillfully written and read aloud well, provides students with a moving and memorable experience. Twenty-eight years ago, Esther Hautzig committed her memories of her years as a Siberian exile to paper, producing a haunting work of lasting impact. Tracing her childhood from a comfortable home in Vilna as part of a lively, well-off Polish/Jewish family, through her years of deprivation, pain, and separation in the Siberian steppe, the author of The Endless Steppe draws vivid word portraits of those who played a role in a life shattered by hatred. Alyssa Bresnahan's reading evokes, through effective use of pacing and tone, the emotional and physical torment of exile, slavery, and hunger and the simple yet profound joy of freedom and reunification with loved ones. This very fine audiobook would be an asset to school and public library collections of young adult books on tape, and provide an alternative means of connecting with this important work in the classroom.-Barb White, Akron-Summit County Public Library, OH
"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
Readers who rose to the challenge of Peter Dickinson's AK and Frances Temple's A Taste of Salt will be engrossed by Haveli 's intoxicating blend of heart-pounding adventure and significant social issues. Hunger for land, arranged marriage and the venerable tradition of shutr keena (literally, ``camel vengeance'': the stern law of death for dishonor) are among the potent forces that drive this stirring sequel to Shabanu: Daughter of the Wind. Married at age 13 to the powerful clan chief Rahim, Shabanu has spent more than half a decade keeping herself and her beloved daughter Mumtaz safe from the malice (``the scorpion in her bed, the rabid bat in her cupboard'') of her husband's three senior wives. She is willing to sacrifice almost anything to ensure that Mumtaz receives a good education: the financial independence afforded by a professional degree is one of the few ways in which a Pakistani woman can control her own destiny. The cruel arranged marriage of Rahim's idiot son to Shabanu's closest friend disrupts the indomitable heroine's plans and sets in motion a dramatic chain of events. Staples's portrayal of Pakistan is remarkably even-handed: she acknowledges the society's inequities while celebrating its beauty and warmth. The sights, sounds and even some of the smells of the Pakistani landscape are described in eloquent, unpretentious language. Ages 12-up. (Sept.)