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Darius is struggling. He doesn't fit in at school. He has trouble making friends. He's bullied. And to top that off, he's plagued by horribly negative thoughts including the very painful feeling that his father doesn't like him and wishes to replace him with his younger sister. Darius, indeed, is not okay. Everything changes when Darius meets Sohrab, while visiting relatives in Iran. Sohrab is generous and caring, helping Darius to see many things and even himself in a new light. I was truly moved to tears by this incredibly rare depiction of a tender and loving friendship between two adolescent male teens. An honest and accessible read for those wanting to understand teens struggling with clinically diagnosed depression.— Zinna
Fall 2018 Kids Indie Next List
“A beautiful, thoughtful book that is all the more impressive for being a debut! Darius is visiting Iran with his family and meeting his grandparents in person for the first time. He struggles with fitting into an unfamiliar culture and feeling like a disappointment to his father, but a new friendship helps him learn some truths about himself and see the world in a new way. An achingly relatable story in a wry, honest voice. Stunning.”
— Cecilia Cackley, East City Bookshop, Washington, DC
"Darius doesn't think he'll ever be enough, in America or in Iran. Hilarious and heartbreaking, this unforgettable debut introduces a brilliant new voice in contemporary YA.
Winner of the William C. Morris Debut Award
"Heartfelt, tender, and so utterly real. I'd live in this book forever if I could." --Becky Albertalli, award-winning author of Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda
Darius Kellner speaks better Klingon than Farsi, and he knows more about Hobbit social cues than Persian ones. He's a Fractional Persian--half, his mom's side--and his first-ever trip to Iran is about to change his life. Darius has never really fit in at home, and he's sure things are going to be the same in Iran. His clinical depression doesn't exactly help matters, and trying to explain his medication to his grandparents only makes things harder. Then Darius meets Sohrab, the boy next door, and everything changes. Soon, they're spending their days together, playing soccer, eating faludeh, and talking for hours on a secret rooftop overlooking the city's skyline. Sohrab calls him Darioush--the original Persian version of his name--and Darius has never felt more like himself than he does now that he's Darioush to Sohrab. Adib Khorram's brilliant debut is for anyone who's ever felt not good enough--then met a friend who makes them feel so much better than okay."
About the Author
Adib Khorram is an author, a graphic designer, and a tea enthusiast. If he's not writing (or at his day job), you can probably find him trying to get his 100 yard Freestyle (SCY) under a minute, or learning to do a Lutz Jump. He lives in Kansas City, Missouri.