The Night Diary by Veera Hiranandani

Back Cover Blurb:

It's 1947, and India, newly independent of British rule, has been separated into two countries: Pakistan and India. The divide has created much tension between Hindus and Muslims, and hundreds of thousands are killed crossing borders.

Half-Muslim, half-Hindu twelve-year-old Nisha doesn't know where she belongs, or what her country is anymore. When Papa decides it's too dangerous to stay in what is now Pakistan, Nisha and her family become refugees and embark first by train but later on foot to reach her new home. The journey is long, difficult, and dangerous, and after losing her mother as a baby, Nisha can't imagine losing her homeland, too. But even if her country has been ripped apart, Nisha still believes in the possibility of putting herself back together.

Told through Nisha's letters to her mother, The Night Diary is a heartfelt story of one girl's search for home, for her own identity...and for a hopeful future.

Content Rating:

Religious Content:

  • References to different beliefs and religious practices.
  • The main character is both Muslim and Hindu, although her family isn't especially religious. 
  • Historic references to religious conflicts.

Where to Find It:

My Take:

I really liked the close view to the main character that is created through her letters to her mom. The emotions in this one are quite powerful and the descriptions vivid. I love the themes of family and love. It does handle the difficult and more frightening moments in a way that would be appropriate for younger readers, but older readers who like books with deeper plots and characters coming into their own, would still enjoy this one. 

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