Eleven-year-old Amr Salie is an avid reader and fan of horror stories.
Now, the home-schooled pupil has completed his own book, titled Blameless. The 17-page thriller was launched on Saturday October 28 at the Lansdowne library.
It is about how easily minds can be deceived and how things are not always as they seem.
Amr, from Macassar, was congratulated for his achievement by the City of Cape Town’s mayoral committee member for safety and security; and social services, JP Smith.
“This is the platform for the start of an amazing life. I am looking forward to the second installation. These platforms are important to showcase talent. Design and creativity is something that we have here in Cape Town.”
Amr’s mother, Maryam, said he started writing the book a year ago on his father’s iPhone.
She said the phone was broken but Amr had managed to fix it and started the book. She said every second day the title of the book would change.
Amr, who is one of four brothers, devours books and, according to Ms Salie, he often finds himself bored in class as he has already completed his reading for the year.
“Over the years a lot of people couldn’t keep up with Amr, even his educators. At the age of six he would steal his brother Mujahid’s books from his bag, even horror books, and Mujahid would tell him not to read it because it will scare him, but he still did.
“After a while Amr told his brother not to be scared and couldn’t understand why he was scared,” said Ms Salie.
She said that because of his love for reading, he would use each one of his family members’ library cards to borrow books from the library and ended up reading about 30 books a month.
“It’s amazing to be able to disappear into another planet and just read and relax. He said that he wanted to be able to look at his book in his hand one day when he was older,” she said.
The family then decided to have the book published and it is now on sale for R80. It can be bought at Lansdowne library as well as online at Amazon.com
Ms Salie said she admires her son as it takes a lot of courage and determination to have a book published.
“I encourage mothers to listen to their children. When they tell you that they are not happy at school, listen to them. If they are interested in something different, let them do it. Put in that little bit of effort, it’s not easy but you have to do it, “ she said.
Amr’s future plans involve creating his own brand with many categories attached to it, such as gaming, books and apps.