Monday, June 25, 2018

A great non-fiction read....

In The New Kids: Big Dreams and Brave Journeys at a High School for Immigrant Teens, Brooke Hauser enters the International High School in Brooklyn, New York, where the students are immigrants and refugees who speak more than 28 languages and come from more than 45 countries. Some are documented, some are not. All struggle with varying obstacles from loneliness, stress from past traumas, cultural pressures, separation from family, poverty, language barriers, where to go to college, and who to ask to the prom. But they all have their own American Dream.



The stories in this book are humorous, hopeful, and heartbreaking. One 11-year-old Tibetan boy escaped China curled up in a small suitcase; his older brother crossed the Himalayas on foot. Then there's Yasmeen, a gorgeous 17-year-old Yemeni girl who wants to go to college but who is a seriously considering accepting an arranged marriage so she can continue to take care of her younger brother and sister (because both her parents are dead). Other students come from Sierra Leone and Burma with equally moving stories. I found myself rooting for them all.

This is such a great read; it's interesting and well-written, and it feels very timely with the immigration debate that's going on right now. The New Kids is one of those books that I think everyone should read:  it's informative, and compelling, and completely unforgettable.

Happy Reading!


20 comments:

  1. It is difficult to imagine the problems of children coming to a strange country with new social mores and another language. Especially now. The resilience and determination of kid who struggle to succeed--despite the odds--is inspiring. I'll look for this one.

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    1. I thought it was a really interesting read! :)

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  2. I love the cover. I’m glad you loved it.

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  3. Great review! This sounds like a great and timely read.

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    1. It really is! (Even though I think it came out in 2012.)

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  4. A timely read and not to mention an emotionally one. Will have to check out this book.

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    1. It's done really well, and I got attached to those kids.

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  5. Hi Lark, agree a very timely book. A reminder too of how different and challenging a young person's life can be depending on where they were born.

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    1. It really makes you appreciate what you have in your own life! :)

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  6. Most definitely sounds like a timely read. I went to school with a lot of Vietnamese children who had trouble making friends because most of the kids didn't try to befriend them. I can't imagine how hard it must be for these kids today.

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    1. You're right. These kids have to deal with so many more things than I ever did. At least in this school they're with other immigrants & refugees experiencing the same kind of struggles.

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  7. I don't read much nonfiction, but this one sounds really interesting and very timely. Great review!

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    1. Thanks, Ashley. I don't read as much nonfiction as I used to, but I couldn't resist this one. :)

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  8. That sounds like a great book!

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  9. Wow, this sounds interesting and VERY timely. I'll have to check it out.

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    1. Let me know what you think of it! :)

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  10. This sounds like a moving book full of must read stories. It's amazing the lengths people will go to to leave their countries--so much courage. And so frightening!

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    1. I think that's what made this book such a memorable read.

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