When her father is killed in a coup, 15-year-old Laila flees from the war-torn middle east to a life of exile and anonymity in the U.S. Gradually she adjusts to a new school, new friends, and a new culture, but while Laila sees opportunity in her new life, her mother is focused on the past. She’s conspiring with CIA operatives and rebel factions to regain the throne their family lost. Laila can’t bear to stand still as an international crisis takes shape around her, but how can one girl stop a conflict that spans generations?
Laila and her family has to adjust from being Middle Eastern royalty to being middle class Americans. The change is abrupt and unwelcome for their family, however Laila is trying hard to make the best of it. Her mother is conniving to regain their power and get revenge on the people who killed her husband.
I read a lot of political thrillers and they're always full of spies and double agents. I think I was expecting more in this book. Yeah, it was a little bit of a political thriller, but it was more of just a YA coming of age type book, but with wildly different circumstances. I kept thinking to myself that different characters were spies in disguise, but then they wouldn't be, and I was disappointed. This book was more realistic than most spy books I'm sure.
I really liked it. I would highly recommend it to teenagers to give them a better perspective on what it might be like for middle eastern immigrants living in the United States. This book illustrated what it's like for both ends of the spectrum, the rich and the poor. Definitely worth the read for kids and adults alike.