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Saadia Faruqi

Yusuf is excited to start middle school in his small Texas town, but with the twentieth anniversary of the September 11th attacks coming up, suddenly it feels like all the town's anger and grief from the tragedy is focused on his Muslim community. A powerful and relevant story from the talented author of A Thousand Questions and the Yasmin chapter book series, about friendship, pride, grief, and standing up for what is right.
Yusuf Azeem has spent all his life in the small town of Frey, Texas - and nearly that long waiting for the chance to participate in the regional robotics competition, which he just knows he can win.
Only, this year is going to be more difficult than he thought. Because this year is the twentieth anniversary of the 9/11 terrorist attacks - an anniversary that has everyone in his family on edge. After reading his uncle's journal from that time, Yusuf feels like he almost understands what the nation's fear and anger felt like.
But when certain people in town start to say hateful things to Yusuf and his community, he realizes that the anger hasn't gone away. And soon he will have to stand up to the bullies, with understanding, justice, and love.

Saadia Faruqi is a Pakistani-American writer, interfaith activist, and cultural-sensitivity trainer. She is the author of the children's early-reader series Yasmin, the middle grade novel A Thousand Questions, and the coauthor of the middle grade novel A Place at the Table. She was profiled in O magazine as a woman making a difference in her community and serves as editor in chief of Blue Minaret, a magazine for Muslim art, poetry, and prose. She resides in Houston, TX, with her family.
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Published 2021-09-07 by Quill Tree Books / HarperCollins


The story is somewhat inspired by the true story of a young Muslim boy who was arrested for bringing a homemade clock (suspected bomb) to school. Read more...