Novels Ask Me No QuestionsDeportation. Green Card. Asylum. For fourteen-year-old Nadira and eighteen-year-old Aisha, these are the words that define their lives. Nadira and her family are illegal aliens, fleeing to the Canadian border - running from the country they thought would one day be their home. For years, they have lived on expired visas in New York City, hoping they can realize their dream of becoming legal citizens of the United States. But after 9/11, everything changes. Suddenly, being Muslim means being dangerous. A suspected terrorist. And when Nadira's father is arrested and detained at the border, she and her sister, Aisha are sent back to Queens, and told to carry on, as if everything is the same.
“Readers will feel the heartbreak, prejudice, kindness, and fear.” --Booklist (starred review) “Moving, quietly powerful.” --Horn Book magazine (starred review)But of course nothing is the same. Nadira and Aisha live in fear they'll have to return to a Bangladesh they hardly know. Aisha, once the academic star, falls apart. Now it's up to Nadira to find a way out. Now in its 9th printing, Ask Me No Questions is a searing portrait of modern America in the days of terrorism, orange alerts, and the Patriot Act. It is a story of two sisters, one of whom must find strength to save her family. A thoughtful, riveting tale of post-9/11 America ... beautifully written." --Chitra Divakaruni "Walk a mile in this family's shoes." --Chicago Tribune "A perceptive peek into the lives of foreigners on the fringe." --Kirkus Reviews “Budhos hauntingly depicts a post-9/11 world where looking like the enemy can seem like a crime.” – Christian Science Monitor “Budhos builds the suspense beautifully and tells a moving tale.” --India Currents
• Winner, Inaugural James Cook Teen Book Award • ALA Best Book for Young Adults & Notable • Kirkus Reviews Best Children’s Book • Booklist Editor’s Choice • New York Public Library Book for the Teen Age • Chicago Public Library’s Best of the Best • Bank Street Best Books • CBC/NCSS Notable Social Studies Trade BookAsk Me No Questions is currently being developed as a feature film--produced by veteran producer Jane Startz, with screenplay by Alexandra Viets. Read the first two chapters on-line. Available as an Audio Book Order through Indiebound.org Order from Amazon.com
The Professor of LightThe reason we went to England the first summer, the summer I was ten, lay in a long-ago promise. And a long-ago philospher named Heracleitus. So begins the journey of Meggie Singh and her father, a charming, befuddled professor of philosophy from the Caribbean. Every summer Meggie and her parents pack up their luggage, leave New York City, and move to the home of Aunt Inez and Uncle Tom in England. There, Professor Singh struggles to write a book that takes on one of the greatest paradoxes to confound thinkers of the twentieth century: the dual nature of light as both particle and wave.
"Taut psychological drama ... luminous." --Publisher's Weekly (starred review)Each chapter in The Professor of Light is a summer spent in England as Meggie moves from childhood to the brink of adulthood and Professor Singh grooms his daughter in a rich mix of philosophy and Indian-Caribbean storytelling. But Professor Singh is haunted by the past: a promise to his family in Guyana; tales of "the jumbee curse." As he pushes further into his philosophical search, Meggie must choose how far her devotion will take her. Light, both particle and wave, comes to resonate with bigger questions of East and West, identity and immigration, being of a place and moving on. The Professor of Light is a gripping depiction of the intense bond between a father and a daughter — a father who is driven mad in his quest to understand light, and a devoted daughter who risks falling off the edge with him. "To hear Marina Budhos tell this story is to listen to prose singing in registers of light. What line-by-line, moment-by-moment clarity." --Lois-Ann Yamanaka "Meggie's unique story, rich with Caribbean superstition, British pragmatism and American ambition." Glamour, Best Books of the Month "This is a must-read book, one to be read slowly, savoured to the last page ..." --The Hindu "An achingly beautiful narrative that resonates with truth and compassion." --Booklist "Haunting and lyrical ... Budhos explores the realms of vision, fantasy, and illogic without losing touch with reality." --Christian Science Monitor Order from Amazon.com
House of WaitingHouse of Waiting tells of Sarah Weissberg, a sheltered Orthodox woman swept into a stormy romance with Roland Singh, a charismatic Indian man from the Caribbean. The two are are drawn together by their passion and shared sense of being outsiders in 1950s America. When Roland leaves Sarah in New York to seek his destiny in a bitter political struggle, Sarah creates her own home with his immigrant friends in upstate New York. There she learns the lessons of waiting and politics. And it is there, finally, that Sarah must decide whether to embark on a dangerous trip to save her marriage and learn the truth about her husband.
"This debut clearly marks Budhos as a writer to watch." --Publisher's WeeklyBased on actual historical events, House of Waiting is a sensitively drawn tale about exile and love; a struggle against the past to forge a new home. "House of Waiting is a wonderfully rendered and moving novel." --Oscar Hijuelos "Budhos makes vivid the conflicting loyalties of family, race and nation ... with insight, humor and tenderness. A terrific debut." --Rosellen Brown "Tackling the theme of cultural differences, the author exhibits a rich style and skillful insight into her characters that will enchant readers." --Library Journal "Budhos' first novel resonates eloquently with the themes of racism, cultural displacement and longings for Utopia ...a subtle lyrical imagination ..." --Asia Week "House of Waiting is ambitious, covering wide far-reaching issues in a few hundred pages and touching the exiled selves in all of us." --The Literary Review "House of Waiting is Marina Tamar Budhos' first novel, but it is evident from the beginning that this is the work of a consummate storyteller, adept at characterization and in love with language." --The Caribbean Writer Read a chapter House of Waiting on-line. Order through Indiebound.org Order from Amazon
Nonfiction Remix: Conversations with Immigrant Teenagers
For the last two and a half years, I have been talking to immigrant teenagers all over the country ... Out of these conversations came a swirl of voices — voices that have so much to tell us.Here, in fourteen intimate conversations, and many short interviews, teenagers from all over the world reveal their most personal struggles and triumphs. REMIX features Muslim girls from traditional families and Guyanese boys who know every hot new club, Hmong athletes, Russians in Disneyland, Central Americans sustained by community and tempted by gangs, Koreans facing extreme pressures to succeed, and many others. Filled with insights about American teenage culture and moving stories about the special challenges immigrants face, REMIX shows all the voices of the new America.