Marvelous Middle Grade Monday
Words in the Dust (Arthur A. Levine Books, 2011) by Trent Reedy is an amazing story inspired by a true story of a real girl in Afghanistan. The author uses sensory details and language to make the reader see Zulaika's world and how many in that culture view us.
Here's a brief introduction:
Zulaikha is forgetting how to write the letters of the alphabet her mother taught her. Boys' call her "donkeyface," shopkeepers look at her in disgust, her father's second wife doesn't like to look at her cleft lip, and she even has difficulty eating. But when the Americans come, they offer to fix her mouth. Zulaikha knows it will change her world if the surgery works out.
You'll definitely want to go to Trent's website to see how he wrote this story "by accident" and who and what book inspired him. There you'll also get to see two other covers of the book--one for the UK and one for Germany.