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Wishing Upon the Same Stars



by
Jacquetta Nammar Feldman

Edition
Hardcover edition
Publisher
HarperCollins
Imprint
HarperCollins
ISBN
9780063034389
POTENTIALLY SENSITIVE AREAS
Discrimination: Xenophobia
$20.22   $16.85
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This is a poignant coming-of-age middle grade debut about Yasmeen Khoury, an Arab American girl who befriends the Jewish-Israeli girl next door. Perfect for fans of Front Desk and American as Paneer Pie.

When twelve-year-old Yasmeen Khoury moves with her family to San Antonio, all she wants to do is fit in. But her classmates in Texas are nothing like her friends in the predominantly Arab neighborhood back in Detroit where she grew up. Almost immediately, Yasmeen feels like the odd girl out as she faces middle school mean girls and tries to make new friends. Then Yasmeen meets her neighbor, Ayelet Cohen, a first-generation Israeli American. The two girls gradually grow closer, and Yasmeen is grateful to know another daughter of immigrants who understands what it feels like when your parents’ idea of home is half a world away.

But when Yasmeen’s grandmother moves in after her home in the West Bank is destroyed, Yasmeen finds her family and Ayelet’s suddenly at odds, forcing them both to grapple with how much closer the events of the Israeli–Palestinian conflict are than they’ve realized. As Yasmeen begins to develop her own understandings of home, heritage, and most importantly, herself, can the two girls learn there’s more that brings them together than might tear them apart . . . and that peace begins with them?

Jacquetta Nammar Feldman’s evocative debut reminds us that friends can be found in unexpected places.

Author’s note.

POTENTIALLY SENSITIVE AREAS
Discrimination: Xenophobia

Details

Format

Print

Page Count

368

Trim Size

8 3/10' x 5 1/2"

Dewey

F

AR

5.4: points 11

Genre

Fic

Scholastic Reading Counts

0

JLG Release

Mar 2022

Book Genres

Realistic Fiction

Topics

Syriac Christians. Moving households. Ethnic attitudes. Ethnic relations. Fathers and daughters. Families. Friendship. Arab Americans. San Antonio, Texas. Jewish Americans.

Standard MARC Records

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Cover Art

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Praise & Reviews

School Library Journal

Gr 5 Up-The Isreali-Palestinian conflict takes center stage in this middle grade novel. Yasmeen Khoury, an Arab American girl living in Detroit, Michigan, is devastated to hear she and her family will be moving to Texas. Yasmeen is used to her life in Michigan where there are many Arab American families; she has a lot of concerns about her new home, but her biggest worry is fitting in at school. As she feared, Yasmeen feels different and out of place in most of her classes, but she is soon invited to an after-school club called Math Lab. While she is excited about the club, she is worried her parents won't allow her to join: the coach of the club is Mr. Cohen, the father of the Israeli family across the street. Meanwhile, Yasmeen's dad watches the conflict growing worse in Israel, and Yasmeen is finding a new friend in Mr. Cohen's daughter, Ayelet. Can Yasmeen's family and the Cohens get along? Many readers will see themselves in Feldman's debut novel. Yasmeen's thoughts and actions feel authentic, and the friendship between her and Ayelet unfolds hesitantly, as would be expected. The information, thoughts, and feelings relating to the conflict are expertly done, especially for upper elementary readers. At times the plot feels a bit long, as it covers Yasmeen's entire first year in Texas, but readers will likely enjoy her journey. VERDICT This valuable title explores an issue rarely discussed in contemporary children's literature. Highly recommended for middle grade collections.-Lisa Buffi

Praise & Reviews

School Library Journal

Gr 5 Up-The Isreali-Palestinian conflict takes center stage in this middle grade novel. Yasmeen Khoury, an Arab American girl living in Detroit, Michigan, is devastated to hear she and her family will be moving to Texas. Yasmeen is used to her life in Michigan where there are many Arab American families; she has a lot of concerns about her new home, but her biggest worry is fitting in at school. As she feared, Yasmeen feels different and out of place in most of her classes, but she is soon invited to an after-school club called Math Lab. While she is excited about the club, she is worried her parents won't allow her to join: the coach of the club is Mr. Cohen, the father of the Israeli family across the street. Meanwhile, Yasmeen's dad watches the conflict growing worse in Israel, and Yasmeen is finding a new friend in Mr. Cohen's daughter, Ayelet. Can Yasmeen's family and the Cohens get along? Many readers will see themselves in Feldman's debut novel. Yasmeen's thoughts and actions feel authentic, and the friendship between her and Ayelet unfolds hesitantly, as would be expected. The information, thoughts, and feelings relating to the conflict are expertly done, especially for upper elementary readers. At times the plot feels a bit long, as it covers Yasmeen's entire first year in Texas, but readers will likely enjoy her journey. VERDICT This valuable title explores an issue rarely discussed in contemporary children's literature. Highly recommended for middle grade collections.-Lisa Buffi

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