Chris Ashley Wasim's Challenge

ISBN 13: 9781847800565

Wasim's Challenge

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9781847800565: Wasim's Challenge
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It is the school journey. Year Five are off to Snowdonia on a Challenge by Choice (CBC) week. Wasim Ahmed is going. He has his brand new kit and has been looking forward to it for months. Wasim's initial enjoyment is as usual marred by his ability to annoy people without meaning to but on this occasion there is a bigger factor that he hasn't fully thought through. In a coming of age bid sparked by a comment from another child at his mosque, Wasim has vowed to partake in the Ramadan fast leading up to the Eid festival. But he has also decided to keep his dawn to dusk fast secret. Inevitably lack of food and drink causes his behaviour to deteriorate and he has to sit out the first day's activities. During the day a box of Mars bars disappears and Wasim beomes prime suspect. Then the next day a walk turns into near disaster as the group gets lost. Fainting with hunger, Wasim finds himself in serious danger on the mountainside. This gripping story is a first-class adventure which shows the challenges faced by a Muslim child in multicultural Britain.

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Review:

Chris Ashley does a brilliant job of integrating Wasim's determination to fast into an exciting drama. Ashley is particularly good on the anxieties of school life - not surprising really as he is a headteacher. (Nursery Education)

Ashley has a lively style with short sharp sentences and a contemporary vocabulary. A headmaster as well as a writer, he has a keen ear for the language of primary school children, and insight into their behaviour and motivation. It is particularly refreshing to have titles in which the multicultural nature of city schools is represented – and by the main protagonist. It is also refreshing to have a situation involving Ramadan and its demands as a central theme. There must be many young readers for whom this is a very real scenario. Both of these titles are well worth recommending especially to boys, KS2 and even a little older. Full of everyday action and humour, they move along smartly, never condescending or talking down. Let us hope there will be more Wasim titles. (Books for Keeps)

About the Author:

Chris Ashley, the son of children's book writer Bernard Ashley, was born in south-east London and his childhood was dominated by sport and children's books. He trained as a teacher and began writing in the 1980s. He is the head teacher of a school in Bury. Kate Pankhurst graduated from the University of Central Lancashire with a degree in illustration. She was the highest placed graduate in a national student competition, The Macmillan Prize for Children's Book Illustration in 2002. Since then she has illustrated several books including Captain Pike Looks After the Baby by Marjorie Newman and Who's a Cheeky Baby? by Ian Whybrow. She has also illustrated Wasim One Star and Wasim the Wanderer for Frances Lincoln Publishers. Having completed her Masters in Children's Book illustration, Kate also lectures part-time at UCLan. She currently lives in Leeds.

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