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The Moon from Dehradun: A Story of Partition



by
Shirin Shamsi
illustrated by
Tarun Lak

Edition
Hardcover edition
Publisher
Simon & Schuster
Imprint
Atheneum
ISBN
9781665906791
POTENTIALLY SENSITIVE AREAS
None
$23.17   $19.31
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In time for the 75th anniversary of the Partition of British India, this picture book is a stirring account of the harrowing journey faced by millions of migrants in the aftermath of the division of India and Pakistan.

Azra knows that wherever she goes, her doll Gurya will follow. Even if it’s on a train that will take her far away from the house her family has lived in for generations. Even if there is a new flag flying in Dehradun, and no place left in it for Azra. At least she will be taking a piece of home with her.

But when Abba comes home and says they must leave right now, Gurya gets left behind in the scramble. Will Azra be strong enough to face the long journey alone? And what will happen to Gurya, now hundreds of miles behind them?

Inspired by the author’s family story, this lyrical, moving picture book is a testament to the strength, courage, and perseverance of the over 10 million refugees displaced by the largest forced migration in recorded history, and shares a young girl’s journey from her old home to a new one.

Map. Glossary. Further information about the partition on India. “My Family’s Story.” Full-color digital illustrations. 

POTENTIALLY SENSITIVE AREAS
None

Details

Format

Print

Page Count

40

Trim Size

8 1/2" x 11"

Dewey

E

AR

0: points 0

Lexile

AD530L

Genre

Fic

Scholastic Reading Counts

0

JLG Release

Feb 2023

Book Genres

Historical Fiction, Picture Book

Topics

 Refugees. Muslims. History of the Partition of India, 1947. Dolls. Family. Dehradun, India. Lahore, Pakistan. 

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Cover Art

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Praise & Reviews

School Library Journal

School Library Journal

Library Journal

K-Gr 3—This picture book features the universal kid struggles of losing a doll, moving, and annoying little brothers set against the backdrop of the 1947 partition of India, into two independent nations---India and Pakistan. Azra and her family, who are Muslim, are getting ready to move to another city in five days. The little girl is unsure about the journey, but knowing that her beloved doll, Gurya, will be with her, makes the thought of it more bearable. When her Abba comes rushing home, they have to leave it all behind. In the hurry, Azra forgets Gurya, and blames her baby brother. As the family hastens to catch their train to Lahore, readers will see that they are one of millions trying to escape the chaos of the partition. As Azra's family makes their treacherous migration, they meet others who have been displaced. Azra misses her doll, but eventually pushes through as she helps her brother get through their trial. When they arrive in Lahore, they find shelter at the home of a Hindu family who had their own parallel journey. Azra finds the doll of another little girl as readers see that same girl discover Gurya. Based on Shamsi's own family story, this work features a heartrending narrative about the loss of a doll but also the loss of home. It also shows how something new can emerge out of heartbreak. With a limited palette of tans and blues, Lak's arresting digital illustrations capture the pandemonium of the traumatic large-scale event with the same detail and care as the turmoil caused by a missing toy. Back matter includes a glossary, background information, an author's note, and a map. VERDICT A great choice for classroom use or shared one-on-one, this is a must-have for every library.—Shelley M. Diaz

Praise & Reviews

School Library Journal

School Library Journal

Library Journal

K-Gr 3—This picture book features the universal kid struggles of losing a doll, moving, and annoying little brothers set against the backdrop of the 1947 partition of India, into two independent nations---India and Pakistan. Azra and her family, who are Muslim, are getting ready to move to another city in five days. The little girl is unsure about the journey, but knowing that her beloved doll, Gurya, will be with her, makes the thought of it more bearable. When her Abba comes rushing home, they have to leave it all behind. In the hurry, Azra forgets Gurya, and blames her baby brother. As the family hastens to catch their train to Lahore, readers will see that they are one of millions trying to escape the chaos of the partition. As Azra's family makes their treacherous migration, they meet others who have been displaced. Azra misses her doll, but eventually pushes through as she helps her brother get through their trial. When they arrive in Lahore, they find shelter at the home of a Hindu family who had their own parallel journey. Azra finds the doll of another little girl as readers see that same girl discover Gurya. Based on Shamsi's own family story, this work features a heartrending narrative about the loss of a doll but also the loss of home. It also shows how something new can emerge out of heartbreak. With a limited palette of tans and blues, Lak's arresting digital illustrations capture the pandemonium of the traumatic large-scale event with the same detail and care as the turmoil caused by a missing toy. Back matter includes a glossary, background information, an author's note, and a map. VERDICT A great choice for classroom use or shared one-on-one, this is a must-have for every library.—Shelley M. Diaz

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