Book Review: "A Little Piece of Ground" by Elizabeth Laird

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A Little Piece of Ground

Authored by Elizabeth Laird with Sonia Nimr

Published by Haymarket Books, 2006

Book Review by Lucine Kasbarian for IndyKids newspaper, Fall 2006


A Little Piece of Ground is the story of Karim Aboudi, 12, a soccer buff and computer game junkie. Like so many boys his age, Karim hopes one day to do just what he likes without parents, big brothers, or teachers telling him what to do. Unlike many other boys, though, Karim lives under Israeli occupation in Ramallah, Palestine.


A Little Piece of Ground shows what life is like for Palestinians who see their homes destroyed by Israeli bulldozers or face road blocks, military check points, and embarrassing strip searches, simply while trying to get to work or school.


As the story begins, Karim is confined in his small apartment, where his taunting brother, pesky sisters and protective parents give him no rest. A two-week curfew ordered by the Israeli military prevents Karim from going to school, visiting his best friend Joni, or playing soccer with his pals. That is, until the curfew lifts and his buddies discover a wrecked space near the refugee camps, “a little piece of ground,” that the boys rebuild as a soccer field. As the boys struggle to reclaim a space where they can be free, their effort symbolizes the struggle to liberate Palestine.


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