Nine-year-olds Youssef, Zayyed, and Omar have never travelled outside their little community of Al-Haidar, so when Youssef suggests that they do some exploring, the friends eagerly set off, each intending to visit a nearby village and report back to the others. What the boys discover is that although all the villages are within walking distance, they are distinctly different from one another and from their own Al-Haidar.
Zayyed is puzzled to see that everyone in the village he visits seems angry and gruff, occupied with making weapons. In the crowded marketplace of the second village, Omar cant help but notice that some people are very prosperous, whereas the others are miserable. Meanwhile, in the third village, Youssef is struck by the sight of a big school where children are happily learning and playing, as well as the first hospital he has ever seen.
In this charming tale, childrens natural curiosity leads them to learn about justice, kindness, and fairness. Al-Haidars resident old wise man helps them not only to understand the circumstances of each village, but also to see that the lessons each one embodies about values and leadership are universal, no matter what the context. Set in the desert sands of Arabia, this is the first in a series of adventure stories in which cultural awareness, surprising discoveries, and learning about ethical behaviour go hand in hand.
Publisher: Liza Mydin