Title: Ask No Questions
Author: Marina Budhos
Genre: Realistic Fiction
Rating: 4.5/5 stars
The book is realistic fiction because it was based on something that could’ve happened in the time of 9/11. The story takes place in New York a little bit after the events of 9/11. The main character and her family are Muslims and as most Muslims in America at the time, they were discriminated and incriminated for nothing just because they were Muslims. The protagonist is Nadira, a 14 year old Muslim from Bangladesh with her family. She’s constantly compared to her prodigy of an older sister and is made fun of because of her weight. The biggest conflict she faces is when her father is detained at the Canadian border for having an expired visa card and being an illegal immigrant. Abba is Nadira’s and Aisha’s father, he’s funny and makes sure Nadira knows he’s proud of her every chance he gets. Then there’s Aisha, Nadira’s older sister who is the top of her class, classical straight A student who likes to bully her younger sister.
The theme in my book is; one person doesn’t represent a whole entire group of people. In the time of 9/11, all Muslims were viewed as terrorists, some people still think all Muslims are terrorists today. They were treated badly, and some were arrested for no reason. I like how brave Nadira was, she spoke in a courtroom in her father’s defense at 14 years old. I didn’t like how it didn’t show them being excluded by other groups, Nadira wasn’t bullied at schools, Aisha had college interviews. It seems like they were just an average completely American family except they weren’t.
I think the people who still think that Muslims are terrorists should read this book to understand the struggles they went through, or ask an adult Muslim what it was like to go to school as a known Muslim. I don’t feel it was fast enough, it was too slow for a book that was only 159 pages long, which is why I gave it 4.5 stars.