Faraway Home Book Poster Image

Faraway Home



Captures the emotions of an immigrant family.

What parents need to know

Positive messages
Not applicable
Violence & scariness
Not applicable
Not applicable

Parents Need to Know

Parent's need to know that this story's heartwarming situation and lyrical writing captivates readers. The realistic watercolor illustrations convey the children's emotions and draw kids into the story.

User reviews

Parents say

Not yet rated
Review this title!

Kids say

Not yet rated
Review this title!

What's the story?

Desta worries that her father (who is going home to Ethiopia to visit his mother) will not feel enough love for his home in America and his family to return. Lyrical writing and stunning watercolor illustrations capture the emotions of an immigrant family.


Is it any good?


Descriptive words evoke a sense of Ethiopia many readers are unfamiliar with, yet give the homeland a character and realism. Author Jane Kurtz calls forth a loving picture of shepherds piping haunting songs of longing in the hills and a young boy who sleeps on the floor of his mother's home and thinks of the moon and stars as night-lights to comfort him. Kurtz brings the relationship of a father and daughter into the reader's life and cleverly guides the reader with haunting words and descriptive passages. Readers will feel the emotional tug along with Desta, who is being temporarily separated from her father.

Stunningly realistic illustrations evoke a rugged wild beauty of the homeland. They depict character expressions and landscapes that capture personality with the smallest of details -- like an upturned face, the placement of a hand on a blanket, or the love reflected in the characters' eyes. This poignant, gentle story will prompt many discussions to challenge and excite a child's imagination and will help them understand a world beyond their own.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about the land and people depicted in the book. How are they different from your home, your family, and other people you know? How are they similar?

Book details

Author:Jane Kurtz
Illustrator:E. B. Lewis
Genre:Family Life
Book type:Fiction
Publisher:Harcourt Brace
Publication date:March 6, 2000
Number of pages:29
Publisher's recommended age(s):4 - 7

This review of Faraway Home was written by

Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are conducted by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.


Our star rating assesses the media's overall quality.

Find out more

About these links

Common Sense Media, a nonprofit organization, earns a small affiliate fee from Amazon or iTunes when you use our links to make a purchase. Thank you for your support.

Read more

About Our Rating System

The age displayed for each title is the minimum one for which it's developmentally appropriate. We recently updated all of our reviews to show only this age, rather than the multi-color "slider." Get more information about our ratings.

Top advice and articles

What parents and kids say

See all user reviews

Share your thoughts with other parents and kids Write a user review

A safe community is important to us. Please observe our guidelines

There aren't any reviews yet. Be the first to review this title.


Did our review help you make an informed decision about this product?