Of Beetles & Angels

By Mawi Asgedom

First published in 2001

ISBN : 0-316-82629

Other time, other places

This remarkable moving story is for any reader who wants to change their life.

This true story talks about a boy at the age of 3 that fled from a civil war in Ethiopia with his family to a refugee camp in Sudan, facing many dangers, to later move to America on an incredible journey facing many other difficulties like racism, language barriers, and financial problems all thanks to the boy’s father’s advice – " treat all people – even the most unsightly beetles – as though they were angels sent from heaven. " This boy, Mawi Asgedom, will take this advice which will lead him to an incredible success in his future.

The 3 main characters are Selamawi, Tewolde, and Haileab. Selamawi is the main character of the book and also the author. He is at the beginning a small and helpless boy, but develops into a fearless, extremely brave person who always sees the good side of things. Tewolde is Selamawi’s older brother and also his best friend who always helps all his siblings through trouble and is also very brave. Finally, Haileab is the father of these 2 boys and is a very wise man who teaches many lessons that improve the life of these poor immigrants. If you want to know about the other characters youhave to read the book and find out !

The pace of this book, at the beginning, goes along quite fast, but as soon as the family moves to America, the author tells us stories about his life of growing up ; stories that inspire us.

The language of this book is rich in new vocabulary, because you learn new Ethiopian words. It is interesting how the author employs these words, he makes the story even more realistic by using these new words.

This true story really teaches many lessons. Some of them are to always treat people, no matter how different they look, all the same and to respect everyone the way you want to be respected. It teaches many other things, but once again, read the book to find out what !

I don’t have any criticism of this book because it was really excellent !

Anyone starting from 10 years old can read this book, but it is especially for teenagers because it teaches many lessons and at the same time entertains and makes you reflect on the book.

What makes this book special is that it is a true story so it is unique in its kind of book and really makes you think about life. That’s why it’s so wonderful !

Alice