2018 · ARC · Review

Review – Let Her Fly by Ziauddin Yousafzai

I saw this randomly on NetGalley and was drawn to the cover. I thought I recogniced one of the people in front. Turns out she was Malala and the book was by her father. I totally requested it straigth away.

This ARC was provided to me by NetGalley and Ebury Publishing (Penguin Random House UK) in return for an honest review. Thank you!

Let Her Fly

by Ziauddin Yousafzai


Synopsis by NetGalley

Guardian pick as one of the biggest and most interesting books of the year

The story of the father who inspired the phenomenon

For over twenty years, Ziauddin Yousafzai has been fighting for equality – first for Malala, his daughter – and then for all girls throughout the world living in patriarchal societies. Taught as a young boy in Pakistan to believe that he was inherently better than his sisters, Ziauddin rebelled against inequality at a young age. And when he had a daughter himself he vowed that Malala would have an education, something usually only given to boys, and he founded a school that Malala could attend.

Then in 2012, Malala was shot for standing up to the Taliban by continuing to go to her father’s school, and Ziauddin almost lost the very person for whom his fight for equality began.

Let Her Fly is Ziauddin’s journey from a stammering boy growing up in a tiny village high in the mountains of Pakistan, through to being an activist for equality and the father of the youngest ever recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize, and now one of the most influential and inspiring young women on the planet.

Told through intimate portraits of each of Ziauddin’s closest relationships – as a son to a traditional father; as a father to Malala and her brothers, educated and growing up in the West; as a husband to a wife finally learning to read and write; as a brother to five sisters still living in the patriarchy – Let Her Fly looks at what it means to love, to have courage and fight for what is inherently right. Personal in its detail and universal in its themes, this is a landmark book from the man behind the phenomenon, and shows why we must all keep fighting for the rights of girls and women everywhere.

My Opinion

5 leaves


This is a short but emotional account of a father’s journey to become a feminist in a non-western patriarchy society. It’s about his journey to find a way for his daughter and his wife, and himself, to have a voice. It’s almost a guidebook for others in the same situation.

The Story

I have not read Malala’s book, but I know parts of the story. This book gave me an insight into who her family is and how she grew up with a feminist father.

It’s an interesting insight into a world I’ve heard of but don’t know much about. Pakistan is a very fascinating country and culture, but the patriarchy puts me off a bit. So, this book was great in providing me with an insight I probably wouldn’t have gotten otherwise. I am more interested in reading books set in Pakistan and explore their culture.

This book is essentially about family love. It starts off with Ziauddin growing up in a loving male-dominated family without questioning the difference in gender roles. It then goes on an explores his journey to become a feminist as a man and a father.

I recently read a book (Fight Like A Girl) in which the author explains why we can’t have men fight for our rights. For the western world, this is correct. But for the non-western world, in societies where patriarchy dominates, I feel this is a whole other discussion. Men need to fight for the rights of their daughters and wives. They need to set an example for others and their sons. Doing this they will create an opening and a crack for the women to escape and get heard. Unless they fight for that opening, no women will get the opportunity to be heard. The work Ziauddin has done to let Malala get heard and to set an example for other fathers is amazing. But he constantly questions others, their iconic comments about why their daughters can’t be like Malala without giving them the opportunity or giving them a second glance.

There are two poetries in here as well written by the author which I found really moving, honest and powerful. It was emotional, and I did cry. I will definitely check you the authors poetry collections after this.


It’s a truly fascinating and conflicting and emotional book. Recommended

If you like non-fiction, memoir, feminism, or anything like that. This is for you

Have you read this? What did you think?

Do you want to read it now that you have read my review?

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