Intensity & inspiration from this incredible young woman’s story



Maria Toorpakai’s life story is unique, and one that should be read by all, particularly in these racially charged times. Growing up in a progressive, non traditional family in a fundamentalist tribal area of Pakistan, it was constantly a wonder that she and her family weren’t killed. I held my breath many times when Maria described whenever she left her home as a young girl. Posing as a boy was the only way she could live in their oppressive world.

The most heartbreaking depiction to read was the stoning of a 16 year old, told from her mother’s point of view after she got married. The unjust treatment of women in Pakistan was a predominant theme for me throughout A Different Kind of Daughter, and I was always expecting the worst for Maria, and her educated sister and mother. Her discovery of squash was her savior. You don’t have to be a sports enthusiast in order to follow her journey with the game. It’s not about squash, it’s about how playing it makes her feel. She also devotes several chapters to her interesting family, whom she describes in lovingly details.

The writing style of Maria’s “scribe” Katherine Holstein was very pleasing. Dialogue and narrative alike were well done, and made this book not easy to put down. You can’t help but root for Maria and cheer when she got out of Pakistan. This will make a compelling intense movie, which I’m sure is in the works.

I was very pleased to receive A Different Kind of Daughter in a Goodreads giveaway.

Until next time,


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