It ain’t so awful, falafel by Firoozeh Dumas

Hi everyone, welcome to the first review post for this merry month of March. As far as covers go I hope you agree with me that this children’s book cover sits up there as a bit of a quirky one. The story itself is one that takes the reader by surprise. Are you ready for it?? Well, what are you waiting for, go ahead…

cover has light orange background. images of small pie with flag at top, small guinea pig at bottom with blue car. patterns around letters across middle which read It Ain't So Awful Falafel. small red stars around all.
A lively read!

Title: It ain’t so awful, falafel

Author: Firoozeh Dumas

Genre: Fiction – contemporary/historical

Publication details: Clarion Books; Boston, 2016

ISBN: 9780544612310   (Hardcover)    |    9780544612372  (ebook)

What this book is about: Zomorod (Cindy) Yousefzadeh is the new kid on the block, for the fourth time. Newport Beach in California is where her family calls home now, and she’s determined to start afresh with a new Brady Bunch name. It’s the late 1970’s, and fitting in becomes more difficult as Iran makes the headlines with protests, revolutions, and finally the taking of Americans hostages. Neither summer camp nor puka shell necklaces can distract Cindy from the anti-Iran sentiments that creep way too close to home. Filled with humour and told in an appealing distinctive voice, It ain’t so awful, falafel is a poignant middle grade fiction debut from an award-winning and best-selling author. 

My review: An exceptional historically diverse read!! I hadn’t laughed so much and cried at the same time in a while!! This tale I found quite moving and poignant, but often hilarious. As it was set in the tumultuous 1970’s, I found myself travelling to the decade of my birth to witness the Iranian government collapse and its impact on a young Iranian girl and her family. I didn’t realise the 70’s was quite a significant decade for any parts of the world until I read this book!! Told in a distinctive voice, Firoozeh Dumas, painted a vivid picture of the uncertainties and realities that Cindy and her family faced. I liked the fact that this was semi-autobiographical; so much of it actually happened to the author herself!! A really fascinating diverse read!!

My rating: 5 ⭐

Additional notes: This title was nominated for the Dorothy Canfield Fisher Children’s Book Award in 2018 and the  Rebecca Caudill Young Reader’s Award in 2019. 

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