Miu's story kept my interest throughout--what will happen to Miu? will she attempt escape? will she reconcile herself to her surroundings? will she accept Abraham's God? I also appreciated how the book examined familiar characters and situations in thought-provoking ways, e.g., how would Ishmael have felt about Sarah's pregnancy? or what was Hagar's role in the camp after giving birth to the assumed heir? Perhaps the best part for me was the underlying theme of "why do seemingly bad things happen in the world (even to good people)?" The theme was strong without being cloying and insightful without being overly pedantic. And it's a question that doesn't often get addressed with the target audience, so that made it all the more appealing to me as a parent. The ending was satisfying yet calls for thoughtful consideration on the part of the reader.
In Where I Belong, by Rebecca Kenney, six-year-old Miu is taken from her home by a band of raiders and sold to Abraham as a slave for his wife Sarah. The years and miles pass quickly as Abrahams camp travels away from Mius home. She resigns herself to life as a slave, remembering that life with the raiders would have been far worse. She grows close to Hagar, a young Egyptian woman who reminds her of home. Hagars son, Ishmael, is to inherit Abrahams kingdom. But when Sarah, Abrahams wife, bears a son, Ishmael loses his inheritance. Mius world hangs in the balance. She wonders about this God Abraham, Sarah, Hagar, and Ishmael serve. If hes so good, why does he keep taking things away?Where I Belong is a fascinating story of what it would have been like to travel with Abrahams camp. I enjoyed seeing this biblical hero through the eyes of a slave girl. Her questions about God are honest and explore that popular question: if God is so good, why do bad things happen? Miu learns to look for the good in every situation and finds where she belongs. Recommended.