This powerful novel-in-verse captures one girl, caught between cultures, on an unexpected journey to face the ephemeral girl she might have been. Woven through with moments of lyrical beauty, this is a tender meditation on family, belonging, and home.
March 2, 2021
12 and up
Grade 7 & Up
Safia Elhillo is the author of the poetry collection The January Children
, which received the the 2016 Sillerman First Book Prize for African Poets and a 2018 Arab American Book Award.
Sudanese by way of Washington, DC, she holds an MFA from The New School, a Cave Canem Fellowship, and a 2018 Ruth Lilly and Dorothy Sargent Rosenberg Fellowship from the Poetry Foundation. Safia is a Pushcart Prize nominee, co-winner of the 2015 Brunel International African Poetry Prize, and listed in Forbes Africa's 2018 "30 Under 30." She is a 2019-2021 Stegner Fellow at Stanford University.
“Movingly unravels themes of belonging
, Islamophobia, and the interlocking oppressions thrust upon immigrant women.” —Kirkus Reviews,
“[A] surreal crash-course
in perspective, agency, and self-love.” —Booklist
, starred review
“Artfully profound and achingly beautiful
, Elhillo’s verse aptly explores diasporic yearning for one’s home
and a universal fascination with possibilities.” —Publishers Weekly
, starred review
and descriptive writing may leave readers feeling the need to live life to the fullest…[a] passionate, piercing
YA collection of poems." —Shelf Awareness,
“A love letter
to anyone who has ever been an outsider, or searched to understand their history, no matter where they come from.” —NPR
[...] An immersive experience
of the intersectionality of gender, class, race, religion, and identity." —The Horn Book