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The Girl Who Smiled Beads: A Story of War and What Comes After - Clemantine Wamariya
The Girl Who Smiled Beads: A Story of War and What Comes After
by: (author)
4.33 15
Clemantine Wamariya was six years old when her mother and father began to speak in whispers, when neighbors began to disappear, and when she heard the loud, ugly sounds her brother said were thunder. In 1994, she and her fifteen-year-old sister, Claire, fled the Rwandan massacre and spent the... show more
Clemantine Wamariya was six years old when her mother and father began to speak in whispers, when neighbors began to disappear, and when she heard the loud, ugly sounds her brother said were thunder. In 1994, she and her fifteen-year-old sister, Claire, fled the Rwandan massacre and spent the next six years migrating through seven African countries, searching for safety—perpetually hungry, imprisoned and abused, enduring and escaping refugee camps, finding unexpected kindness, witnessing inhuman cruelty. They did not know whether their parents were dead or alive.

When Clemantine was twelve, she and her sister were granted refugee status in the United States; there, in Chicago, their lives diverged. Though their bond remained unbreakable, Claire, who had for so long protected and provided for Clemantine, was a single mother struggling to make ends meet, while Clemantine was taken in by a family who raised her as their own. She seemed to live the American dream: attending private school, taking up cheerleading, and, ultimately, graduating from Yale. Yet the years of being treated as less than human, of going hungry and seeing death, could not be erased. She felt at the same time six years old and one hundred years old.

In The Girl Who Smiled Beads, Clemantine provokes us to look beyond the label of “victim” and recognize the power of the imagination to transcend even the most profound injuries and aftershocks. Devastating yet beautiful, and bracingly original, it is a powerful testament to her commitment to constructing a life on her own terms.
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Format: Hardcover
ISBN: 9780451495327 (451495322)
Pages no: 288
Edition language: English
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Community Reviews
My Never Ending List
My Never Ending List rated it
4.5 The Girl Who Smiled Beads
Wow, as I read this novel, I was exhausted. Clemantine had lived quite an extensive life, a life which seemed to be always on the go, a life where she couldn’t get too comfortable because they would soon be moving on. I felt a bit overwhelmed as Clemantine moved around in this novel. She moved wit...
Thewanderingjew
Thewanderingjew rated it
4.0 This Memoir Shines a Light on the Rwandan Genocide
The Girl Who Smiled Beads by Clemantine Wamariya, Elizabeth Weil, authors; Robin Miles, narrator Although Clemantine is still relatively young, she has lived a lifetime in that brief time, and her memoir is inspiring. In the face of enormous terror and danger, she survived, and actually, she eventua...
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