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Dear Prospero World Friend,

In Boccaccio’s ‘Decameron’, as many of you will recall, a group of young Florentines flee to Fiesole to escape the Black Death that swept through Florence in 1348. To pass the time, they tell each other stories. Many of these tales went on to inspire later writers, including Chaucer and Shakespeare.
 
We hope that the below list of recommended reads will also help you to temporarily forget about the pandemic of our times. Recommended by some of our adopted charities many of whom work with the arts, we hope they will enchant, stimulate and inspire you. 
 
We have also partnered with Amazon Smile so that if you would like to buy any of our choices, you can shop on Amazon Smile and they will make a donation to us (0.5% of the net purchase price) at no extra cost to you. The partnership is not limited to books, so  whether you are buying sunscreen or paperclips, please do sign to Amazon Smile for feel good shopping. We have included more details below.
 
Prospero has adapted well to our current situation and instead of curating live events, have been busy continuing to support our adopted charities through a series of workshops and in a partnership with the London Business School, worked to help them to overcome potential obstacles in achieving their goals. Two more outstanding organisations have recently joined our family of Adopted Charities. Phare Ponleu Selpak who are empowering children, youth and communities through artistic, educational, social support and outreach programs in Cambodia, and the Klitschko Foundation (pictured) founded in 2003 by Guinness World Record Winning Boxing brothers Wladimir and Vitali Klitchko to create opportunities for young people and their communities in the Ukraine. We look forward to telling you more about their work in the coming months.

We also shine a light on the work of The Hout Bay Educational Trust (ABC For Life) in South Africa, who are working tirelessly to support school children from disadvantaged communities struggling in English and Mathematics. Please do take a few minutes to read about their very important work.
 
We look forward to seeing you in person this Autumn and have some exciting events planned that we will be telling you about towards the end of the summer.
 
Stay safe and thank you all for your generous support over the last year. Our adopted charity Ek tara managed to raise £18,500 towards their Covid 19 emergency relief programme in the slums of Calcutta which has made a huge difference to the families they work with.
 
Wishing you all the very best from all of us at Prospero World.

Lisa Heydlauff, of our Adopted Charity Going to School recommends Katherine Boo's novel Behind the Beautiful Forevers: Life, Death, and Hope in a Mumbai Undercity

She says: "It is a gorgeous book published much before the time we're in. I am re-reading it now. Katherine's insight into humanity and human ways feels like a prophecy. There's a way out of this, together, that designs for everyone, exactly as we are."

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Elisabeth Kendall of our Adopted Charity The Mahra Youth Unity Association recommends The Sirens of Baghdad by Yasmina Khadra (2008)


She says: "The “sirens” refers to birds, not noisy police cars or ambulances. This novel about war-torn Iraq gives an incredible sense of how easy it is for communities to unravel. It's a gripping and powerful story that really sucks you in. It makes you realise how important it is not to let this happen. Educating children well, empowering women, and building tolerance are all key, and this is exactly what we’re trying to at the MYUA in east Yemen. Without this, one single event can quickly kick off a cycle of action that leads to devastating consequences…"

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Sahar McTough of our Adopted Charity Book Bunk recommends The Havoc of Choice, by Book Bunk's Founder Wanjiru Koinange.

Set in Kenya, this debut novel explores the themes of politics, family, clans, the long reaching effects of colonisation and corruption. It has been described as "An intricate story of corruption, betrayal, love and loss. Tension filled and moving."

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Osman Khawaja of our newly Adopted Charity Phare Ponleu Selpak recommends Never Fall Down by Patricia McCormick.

He says: "It is based on the true story of Cambodian advocate Arn Chorn-Pond, and authentically told from his point of view as a young boy. A must read to understand why and how the Khmer Rouge tried to sever any links to Cambodia’s past culture and how Arn Chorn-Pond, a Cambodian advocate for arts and peace, survived the Khmer Rouge genocide as a young boy by making himself valuable by learning to play music – for their propaganda purposes – but which later set him on a course to save Cambodia’s arts and culture."

 

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Manjusmita Bagchi of our Adopted Charity Ek Tara recommends Half The Sky  by Nicholos D. Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn.

She says "The book shares stories of oppressions faced by women in different parts of the world and how shocking yet inspiring some of their journeys have been. Though it was published almost 11 years ago, the reality for women around the world has largely remained the same and to change it  for the better ( in whatever degree) rests with all of us!"

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Alevtina Nepomniachtchikh of our Adopted Charity Phoenix Space recommends Helgoland by Carlo Rovelli.

She says "Carlo Rovelli helps us rethink the nature of reality by interweaving Heisenberg’s quantum mechanics, ancient wisdom of Nagarjuna with philosophies of the likes of Ernst Mach and... Vladimir Lenin, among many others. "

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Charlotte Eagar of our Adopted Charity The Trojan Women Project recommends The Silence of the Girls by Pat Barker.

She says "The Silence of the Girls is a magnificent take on The Trojan War, giving voice to the normally voiceless women of war, written from the viewpoint of Briseis, a captured princess, awarded to the godlike warrior Achilles as his concubine."

 

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Buy your summer reading list through Amazon Smile for Feel Good Shopping!

Did you know that you can support Prospero World every time you shop on Amazon and it will not cost you a penny? AmazonSmile allows customers to support their favourite charitable organisation every time they shop with Amazon, at no additional cost to you.

How does AmazonSmile work?

When first visiting smile.amazon.co.uk, customers are prompted to select a charitable organisation. When you select Prospero World, Amazon will give 0.5% of the net purchase price (excluding VAT and other shipping fees) of eligible AmazonSmile purchases to us in support of our charitable work.

Visit Amazon Smile to sign up and start shopping using your Amazon login details.

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