May 28, 2018

The Advocate's Toolbox

Americanized by Sara Saedi | SLJ Review

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redstarSAEDI, Sara. Americanized: Rebel Without a Green Card. 288p. Knopf. Feb. 2018. Tr $17.99. ISBN 9781524717797. POP

Gr 9 Up –Readers will laugh, cry, and empathize with Saedi’s adolescent journey as an undocumented Iranian immigrant living in the United States. Her memoir recounts the discovery of her undcoumented status as a teen and the naturalization process in her early adulthood. Saedi paints a clear picture of the financial hurdles her family faced as they rebuilt a life in a new country, the legal implications of not having a Social Security number, and the sharp contrast between her mother’s teenage years and her own. Readers will laugh at the author’s honest portrayals of awkward high school experiences and understand the anxiety that comes with the constant fear of deportation. The memoir tackles complex topics of immigration, sex, alcohol, cultural stereotypes, and what it means to navigate life between two cultures. Filled with pop culture references, journal excerpts, photographs, and relatable coming-of-age content, this book will keep readers fully entertained while pushing them to deeper cultural understandings. VERDICT A must-purchase for memoir collections.–Monica Cabarcas, Albemarle High School, Charlottesville, VA

This review was published in the School Library Journal February 2018 issue.

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