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Shooting Kabul
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About the Author

N. H. Senzai is the author of the acclaimed Shooting Kabul, which was on numerous state award lists and an NPR Backseat Book Club Pick. Its companion, Saving Kabul Corner, was nominated for an Edgar Award. While her first two books are based in part on husband's experience fleeing Soviet-controlled Afghanistan in the 1970s, her third, Ticket to India is based on her own family's history. She is also the author of Escape from Aleppo. Ms. Senzai lives with her family in the San Francisco Bay Area. Visit her online at NHSenzai.com.

Reviews

Gr 5-8-In July 2001, as 11-year-old Fadi and his family hastily board a truck to begin their escape from Afghanistan, six-year-old Mariam lets go of her brother's hand and is tragically left behind. Their arrival in San Francisco is bittersweet as they are all too concerned about Mariam to appreciate their newfound safety and freedom. Fadi struggles with integrating himself into American middle school culture, eventually finding solace in the photography club. Still, he is most concerned with the part he played in losing Mariam and getting her back. A photography contest with the prize of a trip to India seems to be his best means of finding a way back to Afghanistan to help in the search for his sister. This is a sweet story of family unity, and readers will learn about Afghani Pukhtun culture. Occasionally Senzai relies too heavily on telling when showing would be more effective. Also, at times the dialogue seems inauthentic because it contains more historical detail than would be likely among people of the same background. The relevance of occasional references to E. L. Konigsburg's From the Mixed-up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler (S & S, 1970), which Fadi is reading, is never truly clear. That said, this is a worthwhile book about the immigrant experience in general, and Afghani culture specifically. Fadi is a likable hero who learns from his mistakes, and whose talent allows him to make a unique contribution to finding his sister, for the inevitable happy ending.-Kristin Anderson, Columbus Metropolitan Library System, OH Copyright 2010 Reed Business Information.

"The hero of SHOOTING KABUL starts life in the United States as a foreigner, but by the end of the book, young readers will be cheering for Fadi as a good friend." -Mitali Perkins, author of "Secret Keeper"
"Senzai has captured a moment in recent history with enormous grace, skill and emotion. A powerful read." Ahmed Rashid, "New York Times" Bestselling author of "Taliban"
"Senzai has brought a whole new world to life for young readers. It is a world they won't soon forget."-Reza Aslan, author of "No god but God"
"Fadi's world is one of strong familial ties, Islam, and a vibrant, strong immigrant community. For all of Fadi's differences from his Fremont, California classmates, he will still seem very familiar to many middle schoolers. The novel allows readers a view of a different culture and provides background for events that still plague us today."--"Steven Kral, VOYA, August 2010"
"Senzai has brought a whole new world to life for young readers. It is a world they won't soon forget."--Reza Aslan, author of "No god but God"
"In N.H. Senzai's debut novel, worlds collide and a little sister is lost. Can her big brother find her from half a world away? At the same time, how can he find himself and restore his honor in a land that is both foreign and home? Turn the pages. Find out." --Kathi Appelt, author of "The Underneath", a 2009 Newbery Honor book
"The hero of SHOOTING KABUL starts life in the United States as a foreigner, but by the end of the book, young readers will be cheering for Fadi as a good friend." --Mitali Perkins, author of "Secret Keeper"
"an ambitious story with much to offer: a likable protagonist in Fadi, an original and engaging plot and a lens through which readers will learn much about the current conflict."--"Kirkus"
"Bay Area writer N.H. Senzai, who based her first novel in part on her husband's family's escape from Soviet-controlled Afghanistan in 1979, has a warm, engaging style that belies the subject matter. She keeps the story firmly through Fade's eyes. He is a middle-schooler, plucky but not precocious, struggling to adjust to his new life in America, stricken by guilt about his sister, worried about his ailing mother, but still a boy."--"Sandip Roy, San Francisco Chronicle, July 01 2010".

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