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NUR JAHAN OF INDIA (The Thinking Girls Treasury of Real Princesses)

Author: Shirin Yim Bridges

Illustrator: Albert Nguyen

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Publisher: Goosebotton Books,

Material: hard cover

Summary: Nur Jahan (which translates as Light of the World) lived in Indian in the 17th century and was married to a Moghul prince named Jahangir. The book not only discusses her life but also why she was so influential and the role she played in India’s development. There’s also information on what Nur Jahan ate and wore as well as how she improved the lives of other women during her lifetime. This illustrated nonfiction picture book charts the life of a real princess.

Type of Reading: family reading, anytime reading, independent reading, read aloud book

Recommended Age: read together: 7 to 10; read yourself: 10 and up

Interest Level: 7 to 12

Age of Child: Read by a 9-year-old girl.

Young Reader Reaction: I gave the book to my neighbor’s daughter to read and she thought it was very interesting. Actually she wanted to know more about Nur Jahan.

Adult Reader Reaction: I liked the idea of telling the story of a real princess not a fictional one. There are five other titles in this series and they are all very good.

Pros: It is nice to have an alternative (at home or school) to the fairy tale princess stories that crowd the bookshelves. The illustrations, photos and information are all excellent.

Cons: None.

Borrow or Buy: Buy. This is a wonderful addition to the home, school, or public library.


Educational Themes: There are several layers to this picture book for older readers. In addition to enlightening us to Nur Jahan's life, we learn about 19th century India; the role of women in society; and royalty.

Notes: Bob Walch, Monterey, California, sent us this review. Bob's reviews appear in the Salinas Californian, Watsonville Register-Pajaronian, Aptos Times, Ride/Western Times and Coast Views Magazine. His online reviews can be found at MyShelf, Roundtable Reviews, Parent Click, Midwest Book Review, and I Love a Mystery.

Literary Categories: Nonfiction - picture book, biography, India, history

Date(s) Reviewed: April 2011

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