One Half from the East by Nadia Hashimi is an emotional coming of age children’s novel. The protagonist Obayda’s family has issues. Her father has lost one of his legs in a bomb explosion, forcing their family to move away from their home to a small village in Kabul. Her father almost never leaves his room. One day, Obayda’s aunt has an idea to bring the family luck. She dresses Obayda as a boy, a bacha posh. Now she is Obayd. Soon, she meets another bacha posh, and it changes everything. They’re free to explore the village on their own without any restrictions. However, their transformation won’t last forever, and they must figure out a way to make their freedom last.
For a child growing up on a military base, life is different from that of the outside “ordinary” world. The children follow order and rank just as their military serving parent or guardian does. Authors Tom and Nancy Wise show this unique military up bring in their highly readable and engaging middle grade novel Life on Base: Quantico Cave.
Stephen is a determined twelve-year-old boy. He strives to live up to his father’s esteem and plant himself as a leader amongst his peers. He is no longer the new kid at Quantico Base, Virginia, but he’s not one of the old kids either. His family transferred from California to Virginia with the beginning of a new school year. Stephen is a kid used to changing schools and finding new friends. When his
Marta Selbryth is on her way to becoming a ballerina. At only seventeen in 1957, Marta auditions to join the prestigious Intermountain Ballet Company in Billings, Montana and gets accepted. The future seems bright, yet uncertain, for Marta who has never been on her own before and she must find a way to make it as an adult and also as a dancer. Marta is smart, quirky and likeable which makes 84 Ribbons enjoyable from the start.
Marta decides to save her ribbons from her pointe shoes and decides that once she collects 84 ribbon from her old shoes, she will be ready to dance her first solo. With this goal in mind, she tries to get settled in Billings. As time goes on, Marta learns that there is a dark side to the world of dance that extends far beyond