Harold B. Lee Library

Book of the Week: Words in the Dust

May 20, 2011 in Book of the Week, Fiction, Teen 13+, Tween 9-12

Words in the Dust by Trent Reedy, Arthur A. Levine, 2011, Ages 9-12, Teen 13+

Zulaikha, a young Afghani with a cleft palate has little hope of marriage. She meets a woman who offers to teach her to read and write, and accepts, despite her fear of being caught. When Zulaikha learns that corrective surgery from the Americans can make her whole and more desirable as a wife, education no longer seems important, but is something she cannot quite seem to forget.

This book is inspired by an Afghani girl that author Reedy met while serving in Afghanistan. It gives perspective on the war in Afghanistan through the eyes of a profound young woman. Words in the Dust also provides a moving inside look at life for Afghanis and the mixed feelings of hope and fear of the change that came with the war.

–The Book of the Week comes from the Children’s Book and Play Review. This week’s review was written by JilliAnne Jensen, a BYU Student in the School of Education. A more in-depth review can be found here.