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What teachers and librarians are saying about Naveed

'Having anticipated Naveed: Through My Eyes being available in March in time for John Heffernan to be an author-in-residence for Year 7-9 boys during Term 2, I was waiting to read the book hoping it would be suitable for a range of ages and reading interests. I became immersed in the book, making time to read it as often as possible throughout the day. Without hesitation each boy has been asked to read the book so they can appreciate the beautifully written story and the life a boy about their own age in a culture they can only imagine. We look forward to John visiting and the ensuing discussions about this book and his wealth of knowledge about writing.'
Anette Ainsworth, Head of Library, Forrest Library

'The bold exciting sentence starter hooks the reader in straight away. Then within the very first pages we see the wisdom instilled in Naveed from his Padar, “In every darkness there is light, Naveed. Never forget that. Always look for the light” (Heffernan, 2014, p. 2). There are strong messages of faith, anti-violence, peace and democracy. This is a story of courage and selflessness. The ending is so well written that you find yourself shocked and riveted to the very end. The timeline, glossary and further information at the back of the book enables the reader to feel confident in understanding not only the language of another culture but the important issues. Including these websites and book references enables us to further investigate and answer the deep underlying question of Naveed – a boy – if he can make a difference then what can I do?'
Michelle Nye, Director, Discovery Centre, Hillcrest Christian College

'This book forms part of a very powerful series of called, Through My Eyes, which describes modern battle grounds from the perspective of kids who find themselves caught in the horror of war. Naveed is a young boy who lives in Afghanistan, forced to be the man of the family after the death of his father. Each day is a struggle for money, food and reason in a world that is increasingly mad around him. He has watched his country abused and torn apart by drug lords, street gangs, miserly bosses and foreign troops, but amongst all this, there is also hope and when he befriends a stray dog, life offers opportunities for Naveed to change the fate of his country. This is a well-told story that places you in the dirt and uncertainty of a nation worn down by decades of war. It is messy and fear-filled and violent but there are good people and hope amongst the chaos'
Deborah Abela, Pass It On, Issue 486

'This book and the series are clearly developed with the classroom in mind, and teachers will easily make links to a variety of curriculum areas. More importantly though, it is a book that will connect with readers, as it contains nothing forced or contrived, and the voices in it simply demand to be heard.''
Bec Kavanagh, Viewpoint

Read more teachers reviews here

What students are saying about Naveed

'I have loved all the books from the series ‘Through My Eyes’. I have read Shahana and I absolutely love it. Through reading it, I have learnt a lot. I really liked the start of Amina and how she had a hobby, which was art. Even though I loved them all, I have to say Naveed by John Heffernan is my favourite. All the exciting adventures Naveed goes on just to support his family is nail-biting. The story is very thrilling and left me in suspense. I love the part when Pari is hiding something and we find out what it is. It put a smile on my face that Naveed earned all that money at the market. I would recommend these books to all my friends.'
Bonny, Year 6, Mount Waverly

'At times confronting, always with strong themes and issues propelling it, this powerful and deeply moving story of life in a conflict zone is a must read. It brought tears to my eyes and kept me stuck to my seat with all my senses engaged. The war in Afghanistan was right in my face. Heffernan’s perfectly crafted storyline and his perceptive and insightful narrative has created a fantastic piece of fiction not to be missed.'
Delva, Year 8 student

'Naveed always optimist even he and his family were very poor. I’m very appreciating his positive spirit. He never gives up finding a good job to let his family get better life. He always helps other poor people and some stray animals. He don’t afraid those warlords and bullies. He is my good example. When I finish this book, I thought I will become more positive and more benevolence, like Naveed. I trust Good guys will have good rewards.'
Kenny, Aged 16, Blackburn English Language School