Sonam and the Silence by Eddie Ayres & Ronak Taher
Sonam is a young girl who lives with her family in Kabul and earns money by selling chewing gum on the city streets. Sonam’s world is flooded with beauty and joy when she hears an old man playing music on her way home, and she returns each day to listen. The old man gives Sonam his instrument, a rubab, but music is forbidden in Afghanistan, and Sonam must defy her family’s fear, and her own despair, to find this joy again.
Ayres has built a charming fable around the true story of a resilient love of music, which was banned in Afghanistan by the Taliban. Ayres draws from his time teaching music in Afghanistan and his moving, lyrical story is beautifully illustrated by Iranian-Australian artist Ronak Taher. Best suited to children aged 3+.