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“…The Breadwinner is a potent portrait of life in contemporary Afghanistan, showing that powerful heroines can survive even in the most oppressive and sexist social conditions.” –Booklist

The Breadwinner (Breadwinner, Book 1)

Written by Deborah Ellis
Published by Groundwood Books

Eleven-year-old Parvana lives with her family in one room of a bombed-out apartment building in Kabul, Afghanistan’s capital city. Parvana’s father — a history teacher until his school was bombed and his health destroyed — works from a blanket on the ground in the marketplace, reading letters for people who cannot read or write. One day, he is arrested for the crime of having a foreign education, and the family is left without someone who can earn money or even shop for food. As conditions for the family grow desperate, only one solution emerges. Forbidden to earn money as a girl, Parvana must transform herself into a boy, and become the breadwinner. The Breadwinner is a novel about loyalty, survival, families and friendship under extraordinary circumstances. A map, glossary and author’s note provide young readers with background and context. All royalties from the sale of this book will go to Women for Women, an organization that supports health and education projects in Afghanistan.

Primary ISBN:

Available As: Paperback
Middle Grade, Age 11 or older

Community Represented:

Themes: ,

Setting: Afghanistan (Kabul)

Character’s New Arrival/New American Status: In Home Country

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