Ask Me No Questions

October 12, 2008
Marina Budhos has made readers think with her fantastic book Ask Me No Questions. This book explains how a Bangladeshi girl named Nadira lives in New York with her family as illegal immigrants. After 9/11, the family must travel to Canada with their father's expired visa to possibly get accepted for asylum. This novel will surely cause readers to think about what's going on in the world right now, especially with immigration.

Readers enjoy this book because it shows how hard life can be and that if a person is living freely without worrying about a policeman walking up to their door and arresting them, they have it pretty nice! This story shows how even if a person is popular, smart, and pretty, (as Nadira's sister, Aisha is) they could still have the feeling that “the whole world is falling down” on the inside.

Reading this book, a person would feel as they are taking chances and being threatened. Throughout the story, Nadira stays strong and discovers that she is more than “the smart girl's sister,” which gives the reader a boost of confidence about life. At one point in the story, Nadira is tempted to spend her parent's money to help them own a green card that was lost by someone with a similar name. Nadira realizes at the last minute that it is not the right thing to do, so she backs out.

Female readers with travel experience will enjoy this book because they can relate it to the place that they have been. If someone goes to another country and notices underprivileged people on the side of the road, this book will cause that person to think about what would happen if the underprivileged wanted to move to America. A reader who would not like this book would be someone who is interested in girly school stories rather than an adventure that decides whether you will see your father again. Although some of the book has Nadira with her friend or sister's friends, it is not the main plot. Some readers may be fond of this book, not because of the excitement, but more for the reason that the family changes and learns so much about themselves. Plus, this novel is probably made for sixth or seventh graders.

The main purpose of this story is entertainment but I believe that it also has some hidden messages. For example, a big part in the story is that Nadira learns to be herself and realizes that she has some potential in life. Another part would be that even if you're in a hard time of life, you can believe that you will succeed, and you will.

Overall, this book was a fascinating tale of a family who struggles to “survive” after September 11th, which shows readers about what happens when Bangladeshi come to New York.

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