Award-winning author visits Bethany School

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On Friday 15th March Year 7, 8 and 9 pupils welcomed award-winning author, Sufiya Ahmed, to talk about her new book Secrets of the Henna Girl. The book, which is based on the issue of forced marriage, has won various awards including Published Writer of the Year at the Brit Writers Awards, Redbridge Children’s Book Award (teen category) and Sheffield Children’s Book Award (commended for the Young Adult category).

Sufiya began her talk by delving into her previous career in the Houses of Parliament and what sparked her childhood dream to become a writer. She also read from a chapter in the book and there was a dress-up session to demonstrate an Asian bride’s henna ceremony and a book signing for pupils.

After that, our high flyers took part in a one hour workshop focusing on creative writing. The pupils used the main character, Zeba, and setting from Secrets of the Henna Girl to imagine their own climax and produced a short piece of writing at the end.

It was an inspiring and informative talk that meant our pupils were able to learn about a topical yet serious issue bringing the book to life.