Rania is looking forward to high school graduation, a job in a bookstore, and college. But those dreams dissolve in an instant when her mother is caught in an ICE raid on their Brooklyn apartment. The 17-year-old Muslim teen knows it’s all a mistake. Ammi has been working with a lawyer for years, seeking asylum for their family. Rania’s father had been a journalist in Pakistan when Rania was young, and when he was killed, Rania and her mother fled to the United States, where her younger brother, Kamal, was born. Fierce, determined Rania knows she can hold things together until her mother is released, but the siblings end up in a detention center for immigrant children, where they are befriended by Carlos, a teen from Mexico. Pursuing every lead to get out of the detention center, Rania, Carlos, and Kamal hit the road, like the Beat poets Rania idolizes. Their journey travels from joy to heartbreak to love, as Rania encounters myriad faces and stories of immigrants, individuals like Rania and her family and friends who are trying to follow the rules and live their lives in the shadow of border closures, family separations, and strangling red tape. We Are All We Have is an important look at the story of immigrants beyond the sensationalized headlines. Rania takes us through the immigrant experience, from day-to-day life with the ever-present fear of ICE, to government detention facilities, to sanctuaries and safe houses.
THOUGHTS: An emotional ride through the world of immigrants, with feisty Rania as a guide, this book humanizes the immigrant experience. A first purchase for middle school and high school collections.
Realistic Fiction Nancy Nadig, Penn Manor SD