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Jameela and her family live in a poor, war-torn village in Afghanistan. Even with her cleft lip and lack of educational opportunities, Jameela feels relatively secure, sustained by her Muslim faith and the love of her mother, Mor. But when Mor dies, Jameela’s father impulsively decides to start a new life in Kabul. Jameela is appalled as he succumbs to alcohol and drugs, then suddenly remarries, a situation that soon has her a virtual slave to a demanding stepmother. After she’s discovered trying to learn to read, Jameela is abandoned in a busy market, eventually landing in an orphanage run by the same army that killed so many members of her family. Throughout it all, the memory of her mother sustains her, giving Jameela the strength to face her father and stepmother when fate brings them together again. Inspired by a true story, and set in a world far removed from that of Western readers, this powerful novel reveals that the desire for identity and self-understanding is universal.
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Rukhsana Khan is an award-winning author and storyteller. Born in Lahore, Pakistan, she is an expert on books with international and Muslim themes. She has presented at schools and communities across Canada and the US, as well as at the 2006 ALA Conference in New Orleans and the 2008 IBBY Congress in Denmark. Her book, Wanting Mor won the Middle East Book Award. Rukhsana lives in Toronto with her family.From Booklist:
In this novel’s heartbreaking opening, a young Afghani girl, Jameela, discovers that her ill mother (Mor) has died in the night. Within a month, her father moves with Jameela to Kabul and marries a widow, who treats Jameela like a slave. When the widow’s son shows interest in Jameela, the widow is furious, and the next morning, Jameela’s father leads her through the dusty maze of Kabul and abandons her on a street corner. Ultimately, Jameela is placed in an orphanage, and her story takes an upward turn as she goes to school and has surgery to correct her deformed lip. Set in 2001, this compelling story is based on real incidents. Jameela’s matter-of-fact, first-person narrative will awaken young readers to life and conditions in Afghanistan. The story is packed with Pushto words that may slow some readers, but a helpful glossary is included. Pair this with The Breadwinner (2001) by Deborah Ellis for a picture of life before the American invasion. Grades 5-8. --Lynn Rutan
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Book Description Condition: New. Seller Inventory # 23MA36010BV7
Book Description Groundwood Books, 2009. Condition: New. book. Seller Inventory # M0888998589
Book Description Groundwood Books, 2009. Hardcover. Condition: New. Ships with Tracking Number! INTERNATIONAL WORLDWIDE Shipping available. Buy with confidence, excellent customer service!. Seller Inventory # 0888998589n