By N. H. Senzai
(Simon & Schuster/Paula Wiseman Books, Paperback, 9781442401952, 288pp.)
Publication Date: July 12, 2011
Other Editions of This Title: Hardcover
In the summer of 2001, twelve year old Fadi’s parents make the difficult decision to illegally leave Afghanistan and move the family to the United States. When their underground transport arrives at the rendezvous point, chaos ensues, and Fadi is left dragging his younger sister Mariam through the crush of people. But Mariam accidentally lets go of his hand and becomes lost in the crowd, just as Fadi is snatched up into the truck. With Taliban soldiers closing in, the truck speeds away, leaving Mariam behind.
Adjusting to life in the United States isn’t easy for Fadi’s family and as the events of September 11th unfold the prospects of locating Mariam in a war torn Afghanistan seem slim. When a photography competition with a grand prize trip to India is announced, Fadi sees his chance to return to Afghanistan and find his sister. But can one photo really bring Mariam home? Based in part on the Ms. Senzai’s husband’s own experience fleeing his home in Soviet controlled Afghanistan in the 1970s, Shooting Kabul is a powerful story of hope, love, and perseverance.
N. H. Senzai is an author and intellectual property consultant. She lives with her husband and son in in the San Francisco Bay Area. Shooting Kabul is based in part on the Ms. Senzai’s husband’s experience fleeing Soviet controlled Afghanistan in the 1970s. Visit her online at NHSenzai.com.
In February, the young readers in NPR's Backseat Book Club read a pair of books: The Hundred Dresses by Eleanor Estes and Shooting Kabul by N.H. Senzai. They were published 60 years apart but share similar themes about standing out, getting teased and being strong. More at NPR.org
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"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
“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
"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
"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
"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
"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.