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“The best gift we can leave behind for future generations is teaching them to have the courage to venture where no one has dared to go before; to reach new heights that no one has thought of before.” — His Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai
Unputdownable, inspiring and unforgettable- just few of the words we can use to describe My Story: 50 memories From Fifty Years of Service written by the exemplary His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of UAE and Ruler of Dubai.
In this book His Highness Sheikh Mohammed has recorded the milestones in his life. It’s an interesting and engrossing read written in His Highness Sheikh Mohammed's characteristic conversational style. The book is divided into chapters which cover an impressive range of topics. The title of the first chapter succinctly describes what the book is all about- "From Where We Started to Where We are Today". There are 50 chapters in totality covering myriad aspects of His Highness's life.
We get a unique insight into various pivotal events through the eyes of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed. One such unforgettable chapter is "The Northern Tent" in which His Highness talks about the historic day when His Highness Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan and His Highness Sheikh Rashid bin Saeed Al Maktoum met in a tent to discuss the union between Abu Dhabi and Dubai and then encourage other emirates to follow suit. The meeting point was chosen by His Highness Sheikh Mohammed, the tent was pitched by him and he was witness to the birth of a nation. He writes in the book-
"First moments are precious-the birth of a child, the first pang of love... I still remember the birth of the United Arab Emirates."
As valuable as the book is in chronicling several milestones, national and international, it is just as special in giving us endearing glimpses into His Highness Sheikh Mohammed's life- the influences and special people who shaped him as an individual. The chapters in which His Highness Sheikh Mohammed talks about his love for his mother are beautiful beyond words:
"Latifa in Arabic means friendly, kind and supportive. Latifa in Arabic phraseology means to open the heart and soul. Latifa in life was my mother- my heart and soul. Latifa, in reality, was the most wonderful, supportive, softest, kindest and most extraordinary person in my life."
The book also has anecdotes which are unique and will make you smile. For example, how many of us knew the amazing fact that His Highness Sheikh Mohammed is immune to scorpion venom? To know the back story behind this, you will have to read the book and it will surely leave you awestruck.
It’s a book for readers of all ages. While the grown ups and older children will absolutely love the brilliant read that it is, younger children would surely enjoy the personal anecdotes being read out to them. His Highness Sheikh Mohammed is one of the greatest leaders the world will ever know, and each word written in this book is a pearl of wisdom which will make the readers feel deeply inspired and fill the heart with pride, awe, gratitude and respect for this glorious nation and it's dynamic Rulers.
Inspired to write your own book review? Let us know! Still searching for the perfect book to capture your imagination and get those creative juices flowing? Check out one of our many book recommendation lists. Still not sure? Then watch our interview with historian Bettany Hughes, down below.
Mishal Faraz is a student at The Winchester School, Jebel Ali. An identified talented learner, Mishal has been the recipient of Hamdan bin Rashid Al Maktoum Award for Distinguished Academic Performance, the Sharjah Award for Excellence, and the Sheikha Fatima Award for Educational Excellence. She has loved books ever since she can remember and believes that words are the most potent tools of transformation in the world. Besides reading, Mishal is passionate about environmental protection and was awarded the 2020 Diana Award for her environmental and civic endeavours.