Published by Dial Books for Young Readers
Summary: Saya’s mother, an immigrant from Haiti, is in jail for not having the right papers. Saya and her father visit Mama every week, but it’s not the same as having her at home. Saya’s father writes letters every evening, contacting politicians and reporters to try to get help. One evening, Saya decides to write her own story. Her father sends it to a newspaper, and a few days later, a reporter comes to interview them. As a result of the story in the paper, Saya’s mother gets to see a judge who allows her to go home while she waits for her papers to come through. In the author’s note, Edwidge Danticat tells the story of how she and her parents were separated by immigration until she was twelve years old. Grades K-3.
Pros: Kids will be fascinated by Saya’s story and inspired by the way she helps her mom. The illustrations are beautiful, with bold colors and symbols from Mama’s stories woven into the pictures of the family.
Cons: Expect a lot of questions about what is going on with this family from readers unfamiliar with immigration laws.