Reviewed by Sally Kruger aka "Readingjunky" for TeensReadToo.com
Sarah has just finished her junior year at a high school in Pennsylvania. As a professed band geek and the only one among her friends who is Jewish, she is always on the outside looking in. When her parents announce plans to send her to Israel to spend the summer, she's shocked that they would make plans like that without consulting her. At least that's her initial reaction, because once she starts to really consider the idea, she realizes that might be just the thing she needs to find out who she truly is.
After a brief visit in Jerusalem with relatives, Sarah heads to the kibbutz, where she will spend the remainder of the summer. Shy and withdrawn, it takes a bit of courage for Sarah to find her place in the group of kibbutz residents and volunteers. Once she begins working in the fields, sharing meals with the others, and doing some exploring, Sarah finds she is more at home here than back in Pennsylvania. The land is beautiful and rich with her history and religion. But underneath the beauty is a violence between people that Sarah just can't quite understand.
Lisa Ann Sandell uses verse to take readers on this self-discovery type journey with Sarah. I could sense her appreciation and inspiration, yet also feel her confusion as she spends time exploring her native land and heritage. Thoughtful readers will find this a welcome addition to any library shelf.