New from Simon & Schuster

Half a World Away

Half a World Away

For Ages: 10 - 14
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A kid who considers himself an epic fail discovers the transformative power of love when he deals with adoption in this novel from Cynthia Kadohata, winner of the Newbery Medal and the National Book Award.

Eleven-year-old Jaden is adopted, and he knows he’s an “epic fail.’ That’s why his family is traveling to Kazakhstan to adopt a new baby—to replace him, he’s sure. And he gets it. He is incapable of stopping his stealing, hoarding, lighting fires, aggressive running, and obsession with electricity. He knows his parents love him, but he feels...nothing.

But when they get to Kazakhstan, it turns out the infant they’ve travelled for has already been adopted, and literally within minutes are faced with having to choose from six other babies. While his parents agonize, Jaden is more interested in the toddlers. One, a little guy named Dimash, spies Jaden and barrels over to him every time he sees him. Jaden finds himself increasingly intrigued by and worried about Dimash. Already three years old and barely able to speak, Dimash will soon age out of the orphanage, and then his life will be as hopeless as Jaden feels now. For the first time in his life, Jaden actually feels something that isn’t pure blinding fury, and there’s no way to control it, or its power.

From camels rooting through garbage like raccoons, to eagles being trained like hunting dogs, to streets that are more pothole than pavement, Half a World Away is Cynthia Kadohata’s latest spark of a novel.
  • Atheneum Books for Young Readers | 
  • 240 pages | 
  • ISBN 9781442412750 | 
  • September 2014 | 
  • Grades 5 - 9
Pre Order
List Price $16.99
Ships on or around September 2, 2014

Read an Excerpt


Chapter One
   Jaden sat on the floor, holding on to a half loaf of unsliced bread. He switched his lamp on and off, the bedroom lighting up and darkening over and over. Electricity had always relaxed him. For sure it was the most amazing thing about America. He bit off the biggest chunk of bread that could fit in his mouth. It was sourdough, which he liked because it was so chewy.
  On, off, on, off, on off on off onoffonoffon.
   Thomas Edison had called electricity “a system of vibrations.” Jaden loved Thomas Edison. Edison had more than a thousand US patents.... see more

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