American Heart

American Heart

Book - 2018
Average Rating:
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Imagine a United States in which registries and detainment camps for Muslim Americans are a reality. This is the world of fifteen-year-old Sarah-Mary Williams of Hannibal, Missouri. Sarah-Mary, who has strong opinions on almost everything, isn't concerned with the internments, as she doesn't know any Muslims. She assumes that everything she reads and sees in the news is true, and that these plans are better for everyone's safety. Then she meets Sadaf, a fugitive escaping to Canada. Should she turn her in... or help her?
Publisher: New York :, HarperCollins Publishers,, [2018]
Edition: First edition.
Copyright Date: ©2018
ISBN: 9780062694102
0062694103
Branch Call Number: TEEN FICTION Moriarty Laura 02/2018
Characteristics: 402 pages ;,22 cm

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American Heart is an homage to one of my favorite novels: Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain. Huck Finn ends up on banned and frequently challenged lists all the time. I find that most of my favorite books are on these lists. Good literature is often challenging to read. Depressing topi... Read More »

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JCLBeckyC Feb 08, 2018

American Heart is an homage to one of my favorite novels: Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain. Huck Finn ends up on banned and frequently challenged lists all the time. I find that most of my favorite books are on these lists. Good literature is often challenging to read. Depressing topi... Read More »


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JCLBeckyC Feb 08, 2018

American Heart is an homage to one of my favorite novels: Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain. Huck Finn ends up on banned and frequently challenged lists all the time. I find that most of my favorite books are on these lists. Good literature is often challenging to read. Depressing topics. Nuanced writing that doesn’t spell things out or dumb things down. Not black and white, but grey. Not right or wrong, but neither. Ambiguous. It takes an effort by the reader to read good literature. It’s not there to simply entertain, but to make us think. The best literature is both entertaining and thought provoking. American Heart is both.

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darladoodles
Jan 26, 2018

A big thank you to Harperteen and Edelweiss for an ARC of this book. Beginning this book was a bit intimidating when I realized the controversy that was brewing. What I realized was that my downloading of the ARC was a promise to the publisher to read the book and give an honest review.

So here it is:

Sarah-Mary is sixteen and has a brother (Caleb) with a very soft heart. When Caleb discovers Sadaf in trouble, he begs Sarah-Mary to help her and their journey from Hannibal, MO to Canada begins. Comparisons have been made to Huckleberry Finn. Just as Mark Twain did, Laura Moriarty uses this narrative to put a mirror up for our society. As the saying goes, "If the shoe fits, wear it." Some have lamented the trope of the white rescuer. Indeed, Sarah-Mary is white and she is trying to do the right thing and help someone in need. Can't we all learn from her example no matter what her skin color??

For me as a Kansas City resident, the author is local and the setting is very familiar as well. This is another aspect that attracted me to this novel. I have driven through many of the areas in the book with the exception of those in northern Minnesota.

Finally, I want to address the racial/religious conflicts depicted in this book. What has happened to treating our fellow man according to the Golden Rule? If all of us could live out that principle we would have more harmony in our country and not be as divided as we are.

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