USBBY Outstanding International Books selection
Kiki lives with her mother and father and their very old fat dog, Mona. Life is good except that Kiki's father, a doctor, feels compelled to go off on missions to dangerous and faraway war zones. No matter how persuasive her arguments, Kiki cannot convince him to stay home.
Kiki's mother explains to her about odds – how it is very unlikely that her father will die because, after all, how many of her friends' fathers have died? The odds are very good it won't happen. When her father actually does go missing, and as her mother and grandmother get more and more upset, Kiki begins to feel that it's up to her to save him.
This award-winning book deals with big moral issues in a serious way, but it is also very funny and deeply human.
...a sensitive and honest portrayal of a family during a time of great stress. - School Library Journal
...full of character and affection, while also exploring the real, serious anxieties of a child whose father is at risk...An outstanding mixture of respect, wisdom and humour. - Toronto Star
...the voice and feelings of its narrator ring absolutely true. - Globe and Mail
Against the Odds deals with developing morality and the very real feelings of fear, anger and abandonment that come with having a family member in a dangerous environment. Hof sensitively and effectively shows the family tensions... - CM Magazine
Handling tough moral issues with literary charm and a funny bone, Hof shares the story of a native girl who believes that causing her own misfortune will bring her father back from the war, because it would be Against the Odds to have that much bad luck. - Canadian Family
Hof reaches adeptly into Kiki's mind and scattered emotions, allowing her to tell her own story in simple, childlike language...Her plight will resonate with young readers... - Kirkus Reviews
The little girl's desperate reasoning is spot on in terms of developmental level and worldview. Her mother's conflicts-how much information to share, how to maintain a sense of normalcy-are also heartrendingly realistic. - Horn Book
Unusual in its straightforward treatment of the difficult issues children face, this book packs a powerful punch... - Booklist
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