Thirteen-year-old Habo has always been different - light eyes, yellow hair and white skin. Not the good brown skin his family has and not the white skin of tourists. Habo is strange and alone. His father, unable to accept Habo, abandons the family; his mother can scarcely look at him. His brothers are cruel and the other children never invite him to play. Only his sister Asu loves him well. But even Asu can't take the sting away when the family is forced from their small Tanzanian village, and Habo knows he is to blame.
Seeking refuge in Mwanza, Habo and his family journey across the Serengeti. His aunt is glad to open her home until she sees Habo for the first time, and then she is only afraid. Suddenly, Habo has a new word for himself: Albino. But they hunt Albinos in Mwanza because Albino body parts are thought to bring good luck. And soon Habo is being hunted by a fearsome man with a machete. To survive, Habo must not only run, but find a way to love and accept himself.
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"Starred Review. A riveting fictional snapshot of one Tanzanian boy who makes himself matter. Ages 12-16." - Kirkus
"Though the novel is horrifying in parts, Habo's tender interactions with those he loves combat the sense of lurking dread that, most often, takes human form. Ages 12up." - Publishers Weekly
"Readers will be caught by the contemporary story of prejudice, both unspoken and violent, as tension builds to the climax." - Booklist
"A moving novel that explores finding the worth of an individual as they see themselves, not as the world sees them." - VOYA
Author Tara Sullivan researched Golden Boy by traveling to Tanzania and interviewing those working to rescue and educate Tanzanian people with albinism. She brings a sensitivity and knowledge to her debut novel, Golden Boy. - Children's Literature
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Tara Sullivan lives in Malden, Massachusetts. This is her first novel.
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