Four Feet, Two Sandalsby Karen Lynn Williams, Khadra Mohammed, Doug Chayka (Illustrator), Khadra Mohammad
When relief workers bring used clothing to the refugee camp, everyone scrambles to grab whatever they can. Ten-year-old Lina is thrilled when she finds a sandal that fits her foot perfectly, until she sees that another girl has the matching shoe. But soon Lina and Feroza meet and decide that it is better to share the sandals than for each to wear only
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Lina, an Afghani girl and a member of a refugee camp in Pakistan, finds a yellow sandal with a blue flower after relief workers drop cloths off at her camp. Lina finds another girl is wearing the other half of the pair of sandals. Because she has not had any shoes to wear in the last two years she takes extra care in keeping her one sandal clean. One day, the owner of the other sandal, Feroza, tries to give her half of the sandals to Lina. Instead, Lina suggests they share: they take turns in wearing them each day. The two girls start to learn about how they each came to the refugee camp and soon become close friends. One day Lina is chosen to go to America, Feroza is not. Before Lina leaves, Feroza gives Lina her half of the pair of sandals so she would not go barefoot to America. Being given a new pair of shoes for her journey to America, she gives the sandals back to Feroza. Feroza can not keep the whole and gives one of the sandals back to Lina so she can remember her and their friendship. Williams' and Mohammed's book is very easy to read; sentences are simple and short, while full of meaning. The tone of the book is very inviting. Dough Chayka, the illustrator, has created lovely images of bright yellows, browns, and blues - this also invites the readers more as the pictures are warm and not somber. While the setting is in a Pakistan refugee camp, the overall theme of this picture book is "sharing". Even in the hardest of times and places, sharing still matters and counts. This picture book is very uplifting and affecting, showing that friendships can be formed in any circumstance.