Loved this book! This book has so many themes, but first and foremost, it is an excellent book for schools to add to their diversity collection. Students who are not familiar with the Muslim race will soon connect to Amina because the author introduces this Pakistani-American preteen as just another ordinary student, who has feelings, goals and fears like any other American student. However, as soon as the reader gets to know and understand the character, her culture/heritage is interwoven within the story. The reader gets to be introduced to the Islamic religion, the foods, the practices and rituals. Great book for middle-grade readers to read and get exposure to the diversity in the world and empathy of being part of a race not all Americans quite seem to understand.
Do I think it is a 2018 Newbery Contender? Yes
Is it a contender as a read aloud to my 2017-2018 class?: Yes