Tell Us We're Home

Tell Us We're Home

For Ages: 12 - 99
Jaya, Maria, and Lola are just like the other eighth-grade girls in the wealthy suburb of Meadowbrook, New Jersey. They want to go to the spring dance, they love spending time with their best friends after school, sharing frappés and complaining about the other kids. But there’s one big difference: all three are daughters of maids and nannies. And they go to school with the very same kids whose families their mothers work for.

That difference grows even bigger—and more painful—when Jaya’s mother is accused of theft and Jaya’s small, fragile world collapses.

When tensions about immigrants start to erupt, fracturing this perfect, serene suburb, all three girls are tested, as outsiders—and as friends. Each of them must learn to find a place for themselves in a town that barely notices they exist.

Marina Budhos gives us a heartbreaking and eye-opening story of friendship, belonging, and finding the way home.
  • Atheneum Books for Young Readers | 
  • 320 pages | 
  • ISBN 9781442421288 | 
  • May 2011 | 
  • Grades 7 and up
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About the Author

Marina Budhos
Photograph courtesy of the author

Marina Budhos

Marina Budhos is an author of award-winning fiction and nonfiction. Her most recent novel is Watched, which received an Asian/Pacific American Award for Literature YA Honor and a Walter Award Honor. Her other novels include Tell Us We’re Home, a 2017 Essex County YA Pick; Ask Me No Questions, a recipient of the James Cook Teen Book Award; The Professor of Light; House of Waiting; and the nonfiction book Remix: Conversations with Immigrant Teenagers. With her husband Marc Aronson, she is the coauthor of Eyes of the World: Robert Capa & Gerda Taro & The Invention of Modern Photojournalism and Sugar Changed the World: A Story of Magic, Spice, Slavery, Freedom & Science, a 2010 Los Angeles Times Book Award Finalist. Budhos has been a Fulbright Scholar to India, received two Fellowships from the New Jersey Council on the Arts, and is a professor of English at William Paterson University. You can visit her online at MarinaBudhos.com.

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