5 Minutes for Books:
I am Nujood, Age 10 and Divorced

I am Nugood, Age 10 and Divorced is the true story of Nujood Ali (as told to Delphine Minoui).

That’s right, by the age of 10, this young girl from Yemen had been given in marriage by her own father to a man three times her age. He promised not to be with her sexually until after one year after she started her period, but he did not keep this promise. When Nujood tried to resist him, he began beating her.

iamnujoodAfter a few months, the only refuge she found was on the rare opportunity that her husband let her visit home. It was on one of these visits that she decided to try to get a divorce.

I don’t know if you like using books as I do — like a window — but this book offered a peek into Yemen and a surprising look at practices that I didn’t know still occur today. The story was not told to criticize the culture, but to shine the light on one girl’s sad story. I also appreciated the fact that while this is something that none of us can image happening to our own daughters, it wasn’t told in a sensationalist way. Most importantly, it was an inspiring look at the courage of a young girl to fight against that which she knew was wrong.

Her story has attracted worldwide attention and has been translated into 16 languages. She was named to be a Woman of the Year in 2008 by Glamour magazine, alongside others such as Hillary Clinton.

Because of her courageous act, other young girls are speaking out, and countries are even making laws to protect girls who should never be forced to marry.

In spite of a few difficult passages, this is an inspiring and eye-opening story told in Nujood’s own words. It’s a short easy read that would interest women and teens as well.

Nujood’s proceeds for the book are financing her and her sister’s education, and will hopefully help Nujood achieve her dream of becoming a lawyer so that she can help other girls.

We have three copies to give away . Just leave a comment if you’d like to enter. The winners will be announced in next Monday’s book review column.

We do not have a winner to announce, because last week’s giveaway of the Princess and Pirate Potty books (and a Target gift card!) is still open — so enter now!

Disclosure: I received a copy of the book for review purposes.

Reviewed by book blogger Jennifer Donovan, managing editor of 5 Minutes for Books and Snapshot blogger.


  1. Mary M. says

    I am beginning to work on a project that deals with a somewhat similar kind of child abuse, so this would be a fascinating read.

  2. Fabian-Christopher says

    Hi Janice & susan, i trekked all the way over to your site, from a recent link from Chris Brogan. That book does seem interesting ( yes, i know,i know (lol) some guys do actually read stuff like that :) ).
    Love your site,

  3. Jennifer says

    I would love to read this book. It reminds me of work by Nawal El Saadawi. If you are not familiar with her, she is another great author to investigate who speaks out on this important topic.

  4. says

    Your summary really caught my interest! I have a daughter who has worked in 5 different African countries and women are treated so differently there. I love to read and this book looks like one I would like to read

  5. Joan says

    This is hard to fathom in our part of the world, so Nujood’s story should speak to many. Although, I’m sure victims of child abuse could relate to her story.

  6. says

    I too use books a window and love to get lost in them and read about basically everything. I would love to read this book and learn more.

    ckachelmuss at gmail.com

  7. says

    I used to live in Mauritania, where child marriage isn’t as common as in Afghanistan and Yemen, but still happens. My daughter got many marriage proposals while she was between the ages of 4 and 10. A friend told of her aunt and uncle, who married off her 11 year old cousin without telling the girl, just let the man in one night. When the child screamed, he said, “I’m your husband.”
    Shocking right? But what was interesting was that my friend was shocked too. Things are changing, but these things take time.
    I would LOVE LOVE LOVE to read this book!!!

  8. Cee says

    I would be interested to read this book, as I know nothing of the culture in which this woman was raised. Thank you for this opportunity.

  9. says

    We would be very interested in receiving a copy of this book to read. I am sure our friends would value the opportunity to read it as well, so if we win, we’ll probably pass it on to them after we’re done too. Thanks for the chance to win.

  10. says

    I would love to read this book. It isdefinately one I would enjoy and share with my other family members. Fingers crossed on this one. Thanks for the chance to win a copy.

  11. mary says

    Please enter me into the book give-away. I never read books unless it’s a good story. I think this is a book I would not put down until I finish reading it. I will be praying for all the children in the world. Thanks for opening my eyes.

  12. says

    The premise of the story makes my heart ache. And…it makes me angry and sad that a little girl could be treated that way. I sincerely hope she finds hope, healing, strength, and opportunity in the years ahead.

  13. Angela Bailey says

    I would love to read this. I find myself complaining about my life so much and why won’t my boyfriend marry me already so this would be an eye opener.

  14. Nancy S. says

    The word “divorced” makes me feel heartache but to add “10” to that!? I don’t know that I’d enjoy reading it but I believe it would be a very grounding book. I am so blessed. I just need to realize it more often.
    Please enter me in your giveaway!

  15. says

    I love using books to gain understanding of cultures that are different than the one I am used to. This book sounds so interesting. I haven’t heard of it before but I’m definitely going to check it out.

  16. Benita G . says

    What a remarkable yet unthinkable story. I’d love to read this book. Thanks for the possibility.


  17. says

    What an amazing story. So young and so much to have endured. I would love to win a copy of this. It sounds like a great testimony of courage and strength.

  18. Suzette says

    Hi. I was trying to find an on-line review of this book and came across your web-site. I can’t wait to read this book and would love to win it too!Thanks for the contest.

  19. says

    Yes, This story will definitely encourage our youth population specially young girls. There are many countries in the world which enforces girl child marriage to a man who is 3 or 4 times older than that girl. I want to tell you that child marriage is illegal in all countries. It’s a crime to do such type of offence. Stop doing this type of nonsense with your children. They are very small for marriage. This kind of illegal marriage also affecting their mind’s thinking. Thanks for sharing such social article with us.


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