Lailah is in a new school in a new country. She misses her old friends, friends who were old enough last year to partake in the fasting of Ramadan. This year, she is deemed old enough by her mother, and wishes she could share her concerns and excitement with those friends. But here at the new school, she is shy and worried no one will understand the importance of this honor. She worries that people will make fun of her and feel sorry when she “forgets her lunch” for school. She is afraid people will not understand what this means to her. But with a little help from a teacher, Lailah learns how to stand up, speak up and show the pride she has for her religion, her family and what it means to be able to partake in this event.
Lailah’s Lunchbox: A Ramadan Story is an introduction to a piece of a culture many are not familiar with. Reem Faruqi’s text is both sweet, informative and shows how even though we might be different we all feel the same way: we all have worries, we all have certain events that show our becoming an adult and we all need a friend or two to help us when we are a little stuck.
Lea Lyon illustrates this picture book with fun, well colored images and with not too crowded but needed details that fill each page. An afterwards by the author gives more information about personal events and explanations of the story.