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Farah Rocks Fifth Grade
Farah Rocks Fifth Grade
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Reviewed Titles Accelerated Reader

Farah Rocks Fifth Grade

Farah and her best friend, Allie Liu, are getting excited to turn in their applications to the Magnet Academy, where they both hope to attend sixth grade. But when new girl Dana Denver shows up, Farah's world is turned upside down. As Dana starts bullying Farah's little brother, Samir, Farah begins to second-guess her choice to leave him behind at Harbortown Elementary/Middle School. Determined to handle it on her own, Farah comes up with a plan--a plan that involves lying to those closest to her. Will her lies catch up with her, or can Farah find a way to defeat the bully and rock fifth grade?

Reading LevelGrades 3-4
Interest LevelGrades 3-6
Lexile Level580L
ATOS Level4
AR Points3
AR Quiz #505872
Text TypeLiterature: Narrative
PublisherStone Arch Books
BrandFarah Rocks
Page Dimensions5 3/4" x 8 1/4"
Page Count144
BindingReinforced Library Binding
School/Library Price

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School Library Journal - Christina Paolozzi, Bonaire Elementary School, GA

"STARRED REVIEW! Darraj shines a light on sibling relationships, and the malicious, repetitive behaviors of bullies that often go unchecked. Farah is a well-rounded character with ambitions and struggles; readers will identify with her challenges and root for her to succeed. A first purchase for upper elementary readers." - School Library Journal

December 13, 2019

Kirkus Reviews

"Darraj writes a strong character who must take on a lot as a fifth grader. Intimate cultural details—Farah's dad says "bancakes" because "in Arabic, the letters p and v don't exist"; the family has the surname Hajjar due to their Jerusalem stonecutter origins—add to the authenticity of the portrayal of the family's Palestinian ethnicity. . . .Readers will be eager for this empathetic protagonist's next appearance." - Kirkus Reviews

December 1, 2019

Booklist - Ronny Khuri

"In her children’s book debut, Darraj introduces a sympathetic Arab American protagonist who will help fill a glaring hole in representation. . . .While the bullying story line presents a much gentler experience than the real world might offer, this work is more concerned with modeling good behavior than depicting brutal harassment. A useful window for early chapter book readers and a precious mirror for Arab American kids." - Booklist

January 1, 2020


Middle East Eye, "17 new books by Palestinian writers that are worth reading" - M. Lynx Qualey

"Farah is a smart, courageous Palestinian-American girl who faces common issues like bullies, fights with her best friend, and school anxiety, while also honouring her Palestinian identity - there’s even a hummus recipe at the end." - Middle East Eye, "17 new books by Palestinian writers that are worth reading"

May 27, 2021

We Need Diverse Books, "12 Children’s and YA Books by Palestinian Authors" - Hannah Moushabeck

"Farah Hajjar, known as Farah Rocks to her friends, is a smart, funny, and brave Palestinian-American girl. She loves her little brother Samir, Greek mythology, and—yes—her rock collection! Farah faces all of life’s challenges: bullies, school drama, and even problems with her best friend." - We Need Diverse Books, "12 Children’s and YA Books by Palestinian Authors"

August 25, 2021

The Baltimore Sun, "Beach Guide" - John-John Williams IV

"A children's book about standing up to bullying compounded with the struggles of fitting into fifth-grade by Baltimore-based Susan Muaddi Darraj and Ruaida Mannaa." - The Baltimore Sun, "Beach Guide"

June 1, 2020

Susan Muaddi Darraj

Susan Muaddi Darraj

Susan Muaddi Darraj is an award-winning author of more than ten books, including two short story collections. She is an Associate Professor of English at Harford Community College in Bel Air, Maryland, and she also teaches creative writing at Johns Hopkins University and Fairfield University. A native Philadelphian, she currently lives in Baltimore. She loves books, coffee, and baseball, and she’s mildly obsessed with stationery supplies.

Go to the Author’s Page →