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This is a book from our new modified Newbery Possibles List.
This book was nothing that I was expecting. When I read a summary that said this book was about a boy from the middle east who is moving to Michigan, I was expecting a boy from the slums in a war-torn country who fights his way to America.
I was blown away by how similar Aref’s life is to a very typical American kid. He goes to school, collects rocks, hangs out with his grandfather, and doesn’t want to leave the country and city that are dear to his heart. I recommend this book to anyone who is proud of where they live and sees the adventure of moving to a new place daunting!
AR level: 4.6
Grade appropriate: 2nd and up
Overall: 5/5-- Great book that broadened my view of the “middle east.”
Characters: 5/5-- My favorite was Sidi, Aref’s grandfather. I want to go hang out with him too!
Engrossing: 5/5-- very quick read.
Writing: 5/5-- Loved how simply this book was written. The Arabic thrown in here and there make it a little more difficult, but mostly it is an easy, light read.
Appeal to kids: 5/5-- I think once we can get them reading it they’ll love it. The synopsis doesn’t really draw them in.
Appropriate length to tell the story: 5/5
Violence: noneDrugs/Alcohol: none