A Duet for Home
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A Lot or a Little?
The parents' guide to what's in this book.
What Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that A Duet for Home is the story of a friendship between two sixth-graders who live in the same New York City shelter for unhoused people. There are brief mentions of past violence, including the death of a parent who was run over by a truck and a parent in jail for murder. "Crap" is used once. Parental loss and separation are strong themes along with participating in political processes, forgiveness, mental health, and how society helps --or doesn't help -- people who lose their homes.
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What's the Story?
A DUET FOR HOME is the story of two sixth-graders who meet at Huey House, a shelter in New York City for people who've lost their homes. June, her mother, and little sister have been evicted from their apartment in Chinatown because, ever since her father's death in a terrible accident, her mother doesn't speak or go to work. Tyrell's been living in Huey House for three years now, and knows the place better than anyone. As June adjusts to her new living situation, her friendship with Tyrell grows when they learn they both love classical music. And when they learn about a plan to quickly move people out of shelters and into dirty, dangerous, and remote housing, they decide to take action. Can they bring the people of Huey House together to make a difference?
Is It Any Good?
This is a touching story about friendship, family, home, and healing that's sure to inspire empathy in big kids and tweens. A Duet for Home doesn't shy away from tough topics like the loss or absence of a parent, losing a home, mental health, and policies that do more harm than good. But author Karina Yan Glaser takes on all this and more without being too sentimental or heavy handed.
The large cast of colorful characters add warmth and humor. Readers will relate to June and Tyrell as they navigate scary changes in their lives while learning about friendship, healing, and, self-worth. They'll also feel good about the sweet, satisfying resolution.
Talk to Your Kids About ...
Families can talk about role models in A Duet for Home. How do June and Tyrell show their character strengths? Who was your favorite character, and why?
Did you know much about shelters for people who've lost their housing before reading this book? What did you learn? If you've lived in a shelter, or know someone who has, do the story and characters seem realistic?
Why is it important to read about people in all different kinds of life situations? What can we learn? How does it make you feel when a story, movie, video, or game has people like yourself in them?
Have you heard any of the music mentioned in the story? If you're curious, go to the library or search online to find out what it sounds like.
- Author: Karina Yan Glaser
- Genre: Contemporary Fiction
- Topics: Activism, Brothers and Sisters, Friendship, Great Boy Role Models, Great Girl Role Models
- Book type: Fiction
- Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
- Publication date: April 5, 2022
- Publisher's recommended age(s): 8 - 12
- Number of pages: 368
- Available on: Nook, Audiobook (unabridged), Hardback, iBooks, Kindle
- Award: Common Sense Selection
- Last updated: April 10, 2022
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