As the back cover suggests this story begins with a gut-wrenching incident. I couldn't put the book down until I knew the main character, a young middle school boy, found peace. It was a wonderfully layered and satisfying story that put the reader in the shoes of a young Afghani arriving in California. The 9/11 backdrop adds an educational layer that most young readers probably are not exposed to. This story, involving a lost child, was an emotional experience for me as a parent. I don't think kids will be as affected, disturbed, by it. Overall a wonderful story with themes of tolerance, friendship, family, loyalty and hope.