Thursday, May 03, 2007

Ask Me No Questions by Maina Budhos

Nadira and Aisha are sisters. They are Muslim and their family came to the U.S. from Bangladesh. Their parents are in the country illegally, and the family lives in fear of being caught and sent back to their home country. Life is tough for the teenage girls because they know that they have to hide their family secret and they also know that they may not be able to go to college or be able to work like their friends will be able to do when they graduate from high school. In desperation the family tries to enter Canada, but the father is "detained," which means he is put in jail and questioned. Nadira, the younger sister must rise up and try to help her family through this difficult time. I thought this was a good book for someone learning about immigration and what life is like for Muslim teens. Unfortunately, it had the feeling of being written to make a point about how U.S. immigration policy is harming families, rather than being a well-paced story with a gripping plot. It's definitely worth reading, but it might not capture the interest of some teen readers who want more exciting story lines.

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