Synopses & Reviews
A kid who considers himself an epic fail discovers the transformative power of love when he deals with adoption in this novel from Cynthia Kadohata, winner of the Newbery Medal (Kira-Kira
) and the National Book Award (The Thing About Luck
Eleven-year-old Jaden is adopted, and he knows hes an “epic fail.” Thats why his family is traveling to Kazakhstan to adopt a new baby—to replace him, hes sure. And he gets it. He is incapable of stopping his stealing, hoarding, lighting fires, aggressive running, and obsession with electricity. He knows his parents love him, but he feels...nothing.
When they get to Kazakhstan, it turns out the infant theyve traveled for has already been adopted, and literally within minutes are faced with having to choose from six other babies. While his parents agonize, Jaden is more interested in the toddlers. One, a little guy named Dimash, spies Jaden and barrels over to him every time he sees him. Jaden finds himself increasingly intrigued by and worried about Dimash. Already three years old and barely able to speak, Dimash will soon age out of the orphanage, and then his life will be as hopeless as Jaden feels now. For the first time in his life, Jaden actually feels something that isnt pure blinding fury, and theres no way to control it, or its power.
From camels rooting through garbage like raccoons, to eagles being trained like hunting dogs, to streets that are more pothole than pavement, the vivid depictions in Half a World Away create “an inspiring story that celebrates hope and second chances” (Publishers Weekly, starred review).
About the Author
Cynthia Kadohata is the author of the Newbery Medal-winning book Kira-Kira, the National Book Award winner The Thing About Luck, the Jane Addams Peace Award and Pen USA Award winner Weedflower, Cracker!, Outside Beauty, A Million Shades of Gray, and several critically acclaimed adult novels, including The Floating World. She lives with her son and dog in West Covina, California.