Brave with Beauty: A Story of Afghanistan

by Maxine Rose Schur

Illustrated by Patricia Grush, Robin Dewitt, and Golsa Yaghoobi

Seven centuries ago, when the great caravans journeyed to the edges of the world, there lived a girl who loved all things of beauty.

Her name was Goharshad.

This is the extraordinary story of Queen Goharshad, a 15th-century monarch, who many historians now believe was one of the most powerful women in world history. Ruling from the Timurid artistic and cultural center of Herat in western Afghanistan, Queen Goharshad ushered in a remarkable period when poetry, music, calligraphy, painting, and the sciences flourished as never before. A poet and an architect, she designed some of the most beautiful structures ever built on earth.

This story is a celebration of a remarkable woman—talented, generous, benevolent, and brave—whose achievements are an inspiration for young readers to use their strengths to make the world a more beautiful place.

Age Range: 7-9 years
Type: Hardcover and Paperback, 42 pages
Publisher: Yali Books
Language: English
ISBN-13: 978-1949528978 (Hardcover), 978-1949528961 (Paperback), 978-1949528954 (eBook)

Download an Activity Guide for Educators here.

Praise for Brave with Beauty:

A 2020 Notable Social Studies Trade Book for Young People

A pleasant, romanticized introduction to an impressive person, places, and time for young readers beginning to like stories about real people. – School Library Journal

Educational, inspirational, and highly recommended especially for school and public library nonfiction picturebook collections. – Midwest Book Review

This book would be an excellent addition to any family or library picture book biography collection. It’s a beautiful introduction to this strong, caring woman, and a brief introduction to her culture. I wish I knew about her and her determination to be “brave with beauty” when I was growing up. Highly recommended! – Michelle B, Librarian

The illustrations in this book are stunning, a beautiful story with facts behind it. It tells the story of an ancient Afghan queen. Perfect for the classroom and library to introduce children to a new story/history. Excellent as part of a HerStory project. – Rebecca B, Educator

A historical fiction story of the life of a woman who grows up in a land that ends up troubled with war. A great short story for a classroom that provides historical value and very well-written! – Paige T, Educator


Also available at:

Indie Bound Barnes & Noble / Book Depository and other retailers worldwide

For Schools and Institutional Buyers:

Ingram / Follett School Solutions