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Escape from Aleppo

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4.01  ·  Rating details ·  986 ratings  ·  215 reviews
Nadia’s family is forced to flee their home in Aleppo, Syria, when the Arab Spring sparks a civil war in this timely coming-of-age novel from award-winning author N.H. Senzai.

Silver and gold balloons. A birthday cake covered in pink roses. A new dress.

Nadia stands at the center of attention in her parents’ elegant dining room. This is the best day of my life, she thinks.
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Hardcover, 256 pages
Published January 2nd 2018 by Paula Wiseman Books
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Average rating 4.01  · 
Rating details
 ·  986 ratings  ·  215 reviews


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Ms. Yingling
Oct 29, 2017 rated it it was amazing
ARC provided by the author.

Nadia and her family live in an apartment building in Aleppo, Syria, so her aunts and uncles, and well as her grandmother, are all close by. When their neighborhood is being bombed in October of 2013, they have a plan to leave and head toward the Turkish border to meet Nadia's father. With the help of her older cousin, Razan, Nadia packs up her cat, Mishmish, and prepares to leave. Since being caught and injured in a bombing earlier, however, Nadia is very fearful of
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Adriyanna Zimmermann
Apr 12, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: middle-grade
Not sure why this book has 1 & 2 star ratings already but two can play this game.
Amber
Oct 26, 2019 rated it it was amazing
"these kids recognized the sounds that accompanied death"

A true heart rending must read tale of love loyalty and resilient optimism, this book puts a human face on the bleeding wound that is Syria, this story of a girl n 2 young Syrian boys risking it all to make it out of the country and their resilience along the way goes a long way to show how Syrians have fought and suffered in the face of bloody war, brutality n indifference of the world leaders!
Danielle
Jun 10, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: middle-grade-ya
"Like Nadia, these kids recognized the sounds that accompanied death." (p. 43)

"And it was all burning, centuries of history and culture turning into ash." (p. 239)

"What had taken five thousand years to build had taken less than two to ravage." (p. 289)

A devastating story of one young girl trying to find safety and her family in the midst of the war in Syria.
Maggie
May 09, 2018 rated it liked it
I really wanted to love this, because there's not nearly enough books on our shelves with Muslim main characters or set in Arab countries, but I'm afraid it's one of those books that adults will like for kids rather than a book most kids will actually enjoy. There's way too much exposition and info dumping here, and not enough storytelling and character development. The story seems like a thinly veiled excuse to offer expertise; characters are constantly spouting off as though they are teachers, ...more
Deb (Readerbuzz) Nance
Jan 18, 2018 rated it really liked it
Nadia is a typical pre-teen---enjoying spending time with her friends and family, delighted about being selected to appear in a tv commercial, celebrating her twelfth birthday---and then she is not. Suddenly, a man appears on tv and sets himself on fire, and Syria is at war, and Nadia's world becomes a world of bombings and soldiers and fear. Her family decides they must escape to a safer place, and Nadia unexpectedly gets separated from them and must make her own way out of the turbulent city, ...more
Beth Honeycutt
Nov 26, 2017 rated it it was amazing
What an amazing and sad and important book! I was entranced by Nadia’s story, and I learned more about the events in Syria than I’d known before. I feel so lucky that I was able to meet the author and get an ARC of the book for my class.
Emma
Apr 03, 2018 rated it really liked it
Even though the writing was a bit uneven, I enjoyed the story and was invested in how Nadia's journey unfolded. This reminded me of Prisoner B-3087 by Alan Gratz, and I can see my 6th graders enjoying this book as they did Prisoner, while becoming interested in the current refugee crisis as well. This title is certainly a better choice for discussing current events than Refugee, also by Alan Gratz. My quibbles with the writing didn't totally detract from my enjoyment of the story, but they were ...more
Sara A.
Apr 03, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: j-books
Where do I even begin with this book. A representation of what has been happening in Syria. The voice was RAW. The emotions HIGH. The feelings INTENSE. I started and finished it in one day praying that it would end on a good note. And it did. If only what is happening in Syria would do the same. End on a good note. I learned a lot from this book. It has made me want to go online and learn more about the crisis. It makes me want to run out and do something to help. Be prepared for a book that'll ...more
KC
Twelve year old Syrian, Nadia along with her family try to flee Aleppo before the anti-government protesters break out and bombs start to fall. It's too late, and her family fear that Nadia did not survive an air raid. Here is her journey, traveling through a war torn country in hopes to reconnect with her loved ones; along the way finding friendship and unearthing Syria's rich history and rediscovering the culture of her people.
Alex  Baugh
It’s October 2013 and explosions from barmeela, bombs packed with shrapnel, are being dropped from helicopters by the Syrian army on Aleppo’s Salaheddine neighborhood where Nadia Jandali, 14, lives with her family, including aunts, uncles, and cousins. It’s time carry out their plan to leave the civil-war torn city and head for the Turkish border. But before they even get out of the parking lot, their apartment building is hit. Nadia, caught on the stairs, is knocked unconscious and buried under ...more
USOM
Jan 01, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Senzai mixes little snippets of history, facts about the conflict in Aleppo, and the history of Nadia all together. It is this amazingly cohesive mixture that rolls off your tongue. Let me just stop this review to say, if you're looking for profound touching MG books with rich characters stop what you're reading and go get this book. It is a wonderful historical fiction that not only sheds light on the history but also on ourselves. Nadia, and all the other characters around her, are really ...more
Dana
Mar 18, 2018 rated it really liked it
The story line got confusing/long-winded it seemed, but I appreciated the recent history of Syria that was told through this book. Nadia is separated from her family after a bomb hits their apartment, and on her way to reunite with them, meets three other individuals that are trying to make their way out of Syria. Along the way, they run into soliders and rebel groups that either help or hinder their journey.
Kirin
Mar 14, 2018 rated it liked it
(www.islamicschoollibrarian.wordpress.com)

N.H. Senzai's newest book (published in January 2018), gives a face and a voice to the grave situation in Syria. Like Senzai's other books, she uses the rich culture and history of a country to inform the reader, and a compelling front story to keep middle school readers entertained. This 336 page book is not in the AR data base yet, but fourth grade and up should be able to follow the story and be able to handle the violence and destruction presented.
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Lucy
Apr 16, 2018 rated it really liked it
When I saw this book in my library, I picked it up. The cover is very compelling and the summary immediately drew me in. It was a quick book once it got going and I was riveted right up until the last page because while this was fiction, it also wasn't and I wasn't entirely sure how it was going to end.

Escape from Aleppo is about fourteen-year-old Nadia whose family are trying to escape from Aleppo into Turkey. She gets separated from them and then has to journey through the city she once knew
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Laura Mossa
Oct 23, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: bookexcursion
In 2010, Nadia is overjoyed to be starring in a local commercial, loves watching her favorite singers on Arab Idol, and is meticulous about her polished nails. But on the day of her twelfth birthday party, Nadia’s world changes due to the start of Arab Spring, a wave of pro-democracy protests and uprisings that take place in the Middle East and North Africa.

Flash forward to 2013. In the middle of the night, Nadia is awoken by her older cousin Razan and told they are leaving their home in Syria.
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Beyza
Apr 20, 2018 rated it really liked it
A BOOK TO WAKE YOU UP!!

The book Escape from Aleppo by N.H. Senzai is a coming of age novel that tells us a story about a girl who stuck in the middle of the civil war in Syria. When the complications in the Middle East begin, the main character, Nadia, and her family are also affected by events. As the civil war sparks in Syria, the lives of Nadia and her family fall into danger. So, they decide to flee to Turkey. This story tells us the struggle of a girl trying to escape from a cruel war.

The
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Joanne Kelleher
Aug 13, 2018 rated it liked it
I can't even imagine how terrifying it must have been for Nadia to become separated from her family during their middle-of-night escape from Aleppo. Fortunately for Nadia, she meets up with an old man who is willing to help her reunite with her family, but not until he conducts some mysterious business of his own. Their trip is scary and dangerous, with obstacles waiting around every corner. Nadia is brave and resourceful, but also scared that she will never meet up with her family.
While the
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Stacey
Jun 10, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This is an intense, raw, and often vividly emotional story from the perspective of a young girl in Aleppo. I thought that Senzai cleverly toggled between chapters leading up to the events and chapters of Nadia's escape to Turkey. Once I started reading the book, I couldn't put it down. I applaud Senzai for writing on this topic and helping to educate young people about these historical and current events, and atrocities of war occurring in this decade.

The publisher lists this book for 8-12 year
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Ben Guterson
Feb 16, 2018 rated it it was amazing
N.H. Senzai situates a young girl's redemptive journey of survival squarely within the Syrian conflict's heartbreaking confines--all to powerful effect. Set mostly in October of 2013, Escape from Aleppo follows fourteen-year-old Nadia's flight to Turkey (where she hopes to reunite with her family) as she befriends possibly faithless companions and crosses a city whose destruction appalls her. Despite the desolation on all sides, Nadia is still a teenager: nail-polish, television celebrities, and ...more
Alexandra!
A well-written and compelling introduction to the Arab Spring and Syrian conflict. It may have verged on infodumps at some point (sometimes in dialogue), and the main character/the narration sometimes teetered between overly moral (along the lines of "she never realized how lucky she was to have caring, wonderful parents," &c., &c.) and superficial ("my nail polish got chipped--let's stop in a war zone to repair it!!"); fortunately, that latter aspect shifted, via character development, ...more
Kathleen Currie Smith
Jun 01, 2018 rated it it was amazing
We want students to understand what is happening around the world and this modern historical fiction book will certainly help students to understand the adversity that the people, families and children are facing in Syria. It will spark many questions about the Arab Spring, the bombing of Syria, genocide and refugees. #empathy #history #stopwar #genocide
Joe Schrock
Jan 29, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A very balanced look into one of the tragedies of our time. A story of personal growth, aging beyond years, the terrible effects of war and the hope despite all evidence to the contrary that there is the possibility of something better. It should be mandatory reading for our leaders, but also for all of us.
Cristen
This riveting tale follows a girl hoping to make her way out of war-torn Syria. I particularly appreciated the references to the area's history. The author deftly handled the youth perspective of the conflict's beginnings.
Kris
Sep 02, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Outstanding! I felt like I was there alongside Nadia and her frightening journey. The characters are well developed and I feel that I have a deeper understanding of the situation in Syria. This is a must read for early 2018.
Debbie Ladd
Jun 01, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Incredibly sad and difficult to read, but I couldn't put it down. That children should have to live this life in 2018 is unthinkable.
Sarah
Jun 06, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I wanna read this.
I usually never give ratings before reading. But how the hell does this have such a bad rating when it's not even out? There's zero reasons for this
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Ruth
Aug 15, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This is an INCREDIBLE story. Senzai has woven an accurately portrayed story of recently war-torn Syria with rich details of the culture, art, and landscape that define this country. Exposure to characters from rebel groups, national groups, and foreign groups lend the reader a lense of compassion toward this scary and complicated issue. This is probably my favorite middle-grade novel I have read since I started teaching middle school.
Jessica
Feb 13, 2018 added it
Shelves: muslim-reads
Escape from Aleppo is a middle grade novel by N.H. Senzai about one girl’s escape from the Syrian city of Aleppo when fighting reaches the city.

The novel opens with Nadia being awoken in the early morning; her family are finally leaving the city for good. She hasn't left her house since she was injured by shrapnel from a barmeela that exploded nearby while she was on line for bread. As Nadia hesitates before exiting the building, a bomb goes off, separating her from the rest of her family. They
...more
Charlotte Beckmann
Dec 09, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: middle-grade
Four days.

What changes a person in four days? An experience of life or death? Deciding to trust someone or not? Questioning even those kind souls who help you? Such an experience would strip away a child’s innocence. And what of becoming a refugee fleeing your own country for a safer place? Finding everything from life as you know it changed?

Escape from Aleppo is a timely novel that brings its reader into the still-waging Syrian war. Nadia’s story begins sharply as her family’s neighborhood is
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Mock Newbery 2020: March Read- Escape from Aleppo 15 278 Jan 14, 2019 07:30AM  
The Fluffy Unicorns Escape From Aleppo 1 2 Jan 13, 2019 02:59PM  

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I grew up speaking two languages, balancing life lived on the edge of two cultures, and, happily, two cuisines—tandoori chicken and hot dogs, grilled side by side on the 4th of July. I got on a plane for the first time at two months, in Chicago, IL, where I was born, and have been travelling ever since. I grew up in San Francisco, Jubail, Saudi Arabia, and attended boarding school in London, ...more
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