for Balcony on the Moon
by Ibtisam Barakat
A follow-up to Tasting the Sky, a memoir of her childhood, easily stands on its own as Ibtisam Barakat describes her middle and late childhood and early young adulthood in the West Bank during the 1970s. An introduction by the author provides essential information to ground readers in the political reality in the Middle East that was the backdrop of her coming of age. Ibtisam is passionate about learning and education and eventually decides she wants to be a writer. While Ibtisam is in high school her mother, who left school in 6 th grade, decides she wants to go back to her studies. It’s an idea Ibtisam’s father initially is reluctant to support (but eventually takes pride in), while Ibtisam throws herself into helping her mother prepare. One of the standout elements of this memoir is the way Barakat writes about her family with such exasperation, understanding, and tenderness, beautifully and honestly revealing details of their lives. It also illuminates the experience of being Palestinian, a “homeless people,” and of being a girl and young woman defying cultural and sometimes familial expectations to pursue her dreams. (Age 12 and older)
CCBC Choices 2017. © Cooperative Children's Book Center, Univ. of Wisconsin - Madison, 2017. Used with permission.
Picking up where Tasting the Sky left off, Balcony on the Moon follows Ibtisam Barakat through her childhood and adolescence in Palestine from 1972-1981 and chronicles her desire to be a writer.
A Junior Library Guild Selection
A Palestine Book Award Shortlist Selection
A VOYA Nonfiction Honor Roll Selection
A Skipping Stones Honor Book
An Arab-American National Museum Honor Book
A Bank Street College of Education Best Book
An American Library Association/Amelia Bloomer Project Top Ten Book
A Notable Book for a Global Society
A News & Observer Newspaper's Wilde Best Book Award Winner
A Middle East Book Award Honorable Mention
In this follow-up to Tasting the Sky, a young Ibtisam finds inspiration through writing letters to pen pals and from an adult who encourages her to keep at it, but the most surprising turn of all for Ibtisam happens when her mother decides that she would like to seek out an education, too. This memoir is a touching, at times funny, and enlightening look at the not often depicted daily life in a politically tumultuous area.
A Margaret Ferguson Book
Publisher description retrieved from Google Books.