The Length of a String

Audiobook coming August 2021!

Imani knows exactly what she wants as her big bat mitzvah gift: to find her birth parents. She loves her family and her Jewish community in Baltimore, but she has always wondered where she came from, especially since she’s black and almost everyone she knows is white. Then her mom’s grandmother–Imani’s great-grandma Anna–passes away, and Imani discovers an old journal among her books. It’s Anna’s diary from 1941, the year she was twelve and fled Nazi-occupied Luxembourg alone, sent by her parents to seek refuge in Brooklyn, New York. Anna’s diary records her journey to America and her new life with an adoptive family of her own. And as Imani reads the diary, she begins to see her family, and her place in it, in a whole new way.

* 2019 Sydney Taylor Award Honor Book for Older Readers *
* Tablet Magazine best Jewish children’s books of the year *
* Maine Student Book Award master list *
* California Young Reader Medal finalist 2021-2022 (vote now!) *
“Unforgettable and entirely satisfying”
– PATRICIA REILLY GIFF, Newbery Honor-winning author of Lily’s Crossing


BOOKSHOP.ORG *supports your local indie during the pandemic* AMAZON BARNES & NOBLE INDIEBOUND

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For Teachers

Discussion Questions – Click to download discussion questions for your class, book club, or reading group.

Family Tree Activity – Construct family trees for Imani, Anna, and yourself.

Click here to view all of Elissa’s teacher resources!