Where I Belong
by Gillian Cross
In the hot desert of Somalia, Mahmoud is kidnapped and held for a ten thousand-dollar ransom. His older sister, Khadija, is in London, thousands of miles away; and yet Mahmoud s life is in her hands. Someone has discovered her identity, that she is Qarsoon the Hidden One the face of famous fashion designer Sandy Dexter s newest collection. Who can Khadija trust to help her? She now must appear as planned on the Fashion Week runway. Only then can she possibly earn the money to save Mahmoud s life. Also involved is Abdi, a fourteen-year-old boy coming to terms with the mysterious disappearance of his father, and Freya, the totally unfashionable daughter of Sandy Dexter, trying to find her place in her mother s world of haute couture.
I thought that this was an interesting way to learn a lot about Somalian culture. I hadn't really known anything about it before. Khadija, Abdi, and Freya each brought a totally different viewpoint to the story and it was intriguing to read how they interacted with each other and the adults around them. I had trouble sometimes keeping track of who was the narrator of the different chapters, though.
There was a lot of exciting stuff in this book and it had short, easy to read chapters. While I thought the storyline was really interesting, it didn't completely capture my interest. I'm glad I read it, but it's not my favorite new book.