Chanda's Secrets

Chanda's Secrets

Book - 2004
Average Rating:
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Chanda's mother is not herself, her younger sister is acting out, and her best friend needs help. A powerful story set amid the African HIV/AIDS pandemic. In this sensitive, swiftly paced story, readers will find echoes of To Kill a Mockingbird as Chanda, a 16-year-old, astonishingly perceptive girl living in the small city of Bonang in Africa, must confront the undercurrents of shame and stigma associated with HIV/AIDS. Through his artful style and dramatic storytelling, Allan Stratton captures the enduring strength of loyalty, the profound impact of loss, and a fearlessness that is powered by the heart. Above all, it is a story about living with truth. Proceeds from the sale of this book will be used to support organizations working to better the lives of Africans living with HIV/AIDS.
Publisher: Toronto : Annick Press, 2004.
ISBN: 9781550378344
1550378341
9781550378351
155037835X
Characteristics: 193 pages

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Cdnbookworm Jul 12, 2013

This children's novel comes before the story continued in Chanda's Wars. Chanda is sixteen, and as the book begins her youngest sister, Sara, eighteen months, has died. Chanda's mother is grieving and her step-father is drunk, so she begins the process of organizing the funeral. With her mother lost in grief, Chanda has taken on most of the household chores as well as going to school. Her step-father hardly comes home and when he finally does, he appears to be dying, but disappears soon after. Chanda's mother's headaches grow worse and she decides to go back to their home village for a visit on the advice of a traditional healer.
Meanwhile, Chanda's friend Esther struggles to make a life for herself, trying to earn enough to bring her family back together. Rumors start and Chanda is told to spend less time with her friend lest her reputation suffer as well. But Chanda values her friendship first and stands beside her friend no matter what. She also finds herself strong enough to reveal her own secret and be open about the illness that has become so common in their community.
A story about families, friendship, truth, and never giving up on your dreams.

b
brookeworthington
Mar 02, 2013

If you're not ready to cry about 10 times, STAY AWAY FROM THIS BOOK. Heartbreakingly beautiful.

2horses2 Jun 12, 2011

I just got this book out of the library to read. It looks good! :)

b
Bells
Jun 12, 2010

Growing up in a fictional African country, Chanda must cope with AIDS affecting her community- and perhaps even her own family. A tragic novel dealing with the power of shame, and the triumph of love.

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