Twelve-year-old Mya is an Asian-Canadian child being raised in Vancouver, B.C., by her Buddhist mother from Myanmar and her Christian father. She has grandiose plans of becoming a United Nations diplomat and gaining fame by solving the world’s problems. As a co-founder of a Kids for Social Justice club at her school, Mya’s passion leads her to research social issues in various countries, and then to take action.
But despite her world-changing vision, Mya finds her own life falling apart when her mother is suddenly called away to Myanmar to take care of Mya’s sick grandmother. Though Mya’s father, an environmental lawyer, does his best to run the household, soon the laundry is piling up, meals aren’t nutritious, and Mya finds herself in charge of her younger sister more often than she’d like to be. All the upheaval is getting in the way of her most important objective—to convince her parents to allow her to have a cellphone.
As Mya navigates common challenges of the preteen years—a changing body, social awkwardness, and feelings about boys—and as she tries to solve the world’s problems at the same time, she despairs of the impossibility of it all. But her father helps Mya gain a new perspective by showing her that she and her peers can take small steps to bring about change.
In this hilarious, moving book for juvenile readers, author Tanya Lloyd Kyi has created in Mya a compelling, empathetic, and justice-loving character who has much to offer, but even more to learn. Mya must find her way in the real world where establishing just practices is an ongoing struggle. Christian parents and their children might want to share this book as a discussion starter. What might it be like for a child to be raised with two religions? Why do we believe Jesus is the only Way, Truth, and Life for all people? (Puffin Canada)