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Sadiq and the Desert Star
Sadiq and the Desert Star
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Award Winners Reviewed Titles

Sadiq and the Desert Star

by Siman Nuurali
Illustrated by Anjan Sarkar

When Sadiq's father leaves on a business trip, he worries he'll miss his baba too much. But Baba has a story for Sadiq: the story of the Desert Star. Learning about Baba's passion for the stars sparks Sadiq's interest in outer space. But can Sadiq find others who are willing to help him start the space club of his dreams?

GenreRealistic Fiction
Reading LevelGrades 1-2
Interest LevelGrades 1-3
Lexile Level610L
AR Points3.5
AR Quiz #502708
Text TypeLiterature: Narrative
PublisherPicture Window Books
Page Dimensions5 1/4" x 7 1/2"
Page Count64
Capstone Interactive eBook
List Price: $53.32 School/Library Price

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Booksource Banter

"From Siman Nuurali comes fun-loving third grader, Sadiq, and his lively Somali American family. . . .This series is ideal for emergent readers." - Booksource Banter

June 27, 2019

The Planetary Society - Emily Lakdawalla

"In this easy chapter book with friendly cartoony illustrations, a Minnesotan boy falls in love with astronomy on a field trip to a planetarium. He and some of his classmates establish a school Space Club then and there. . . .In and out of the story are woven references to the boy’s Somali culture; his father tells stories of caravans navigating by the stars, and his mother and sister make and sell sambuus (samosas) for the bake sale." - The Planetary Society

November 13, 2019


A Crafty Arab - Kay Tarapolsi

"My daughter read the story, and had lots of questions about Berbera, Somalia, where Sadiq was from. . . .My daughter did love the facts about Somalia that was included, as well as the new Somali terms she got to practice. For example, in Somali, a grandfather is awoowe, but in Libyan we use jidu. I also loved the glossary in the back for the astronomy terms, plus the sections that encouraged kids to talk about and write down their thoughts about the book." - A Crafty Arab

August 1, 2019

Teen Librarian Toolbox - Amanda Macgregor

"This new series, featuring a Somali American Minnesota kid, was an instant hit at my school. HUGE need for this series to exist." - Teen Librarian Toolbox

November 14, 2019


School Library Journal - Heidi Grange, Summit Elementary School, Smithfield, UT

"Sadiq’s family is from Somalia, and references to the country, language, and traditions are blended into the text. . . .A pleasant, informative read that blends family and STEM themes; recommended for general purchase." - School Library Journal

June 1, 2019


Chicago Public Library

Best of the Best Books 2019

November 1, 2019

Siman Nuurali

Siman Nuurali

Siman Nuurali grew up in Kenya. She now lives in Minnesota. Siman and her family are Somali—just like Sadiq and his family! She and her five children love to play badminton and board games together. Siman works at Children’s Hospital, and in her free time, she also enjoys writing and reading. 

Go to the Author’s Page →