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Tuesday, September 30, 2014 |  Madison, WI: 44.0° F  Overcast
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Kids Culture Bin

Ask Me No Questions
By Marina Tamar Budhos

This teen novel tackles the timely topic of immigration from the perspective of Nadira, a 14-year-old illegal immigrant from Bangladesh. Nadira's family is feeling pressure being illegal Muslims living in post-9/11 New York City. The Hossain family decides to seek religious asylum in Canada, but, due to circumstances and red tape, the family is separated.

Budhos captures the feelings of isolation Nadira feels knowing she is illegal and constantly feeling like she may be deported. Nadira, who considered her self an underachiever, turns out to be the one with enough strength to help her family through their struggles in this engaging and insightful novel, recommended for teens in grades 7-12.

- Kelly Verheyden

A Room With a Zoo
By Jules Feiffer

If you love animals (or if you know a kid who does), then you will relate well to this story of a young girl who acquires more and more pets throughout this rollicking chapter book. All Julie really wants is a dog, but her mother doesn't like dogs and her father isn't sure she's old enough to take care of one, so they compromise and get her a cat. And then a hamster. And then a fish. And then a turtle. And then another cat. Feiffer's illustrations are expressive and full of humor.

- Carissa Christner

Grandfather Buffalo
By Jim Arnosky

"Grandfather Buffalo was old and slow, but he was still strong." So starts this ode to grandfathers everywhere. Despite his age and the fact that he is always lagging behind, Grandfather Buffalo is still part of the herd. One day, Grandfather Buffalo encounters a young cow carrying a calf, also lagging behind. An adventure ensues that shows that Grandfather is still capable of saving the day.

A master illustrator and writer of natural history books for children, Arnosky's books offer realistic portrayals of the natural world in all its glory. His poetic text and glorious landscapes capture the majesty of nature and its eternal truths. For preschoolers-grade 2.

- Carolyn Forde

Reviews provided by Youth Services librarians of the Madison Public Library.

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