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THANK YOU, NEIGHBOR!

HARPERCOLLINS (2021)

When I first moved to my neighborhood in Brooklyn, I didn’t know anyone and I felt pretty lonely. Luckily, I had my dog, Feta. Feta liked to go for long walks and I started to get to know my neighborhood that way.  I began to notice things I normally wouldn’t, and strangers became people I recognized.

 

Then one day, Euri said “hello” to Feta and me as he took out the trash. And Margiann said “thank you” as I admired her beautiful garden.  Soon I came to not only know my neighbors, but appreciate them as well. They were doing all sorts of things-- both big and small-- that helped make our neighborhood a better, more beautiful place.

 

My neighbors aren’t just the people living around me. They are also those who work in my neighborhood-- the sanitation workers, firefighters and construction workers. They’re the home health aides, the delivery drivers, and bus drivers. They’re Mohammed at the grocery store, Tommy delivering our mail, and Herbert sweeping the sidewalks clean.

 

The more walks Feta and I took and the more stories I heard, the more I felt like I belonged. And when the pandemic hit, I saw all us neighbors—residents and essential workers alike—help each other out more than ever, even when it meant putting themselves at risk.  I wanted to make this book about my neighbors as a way of saying “thank you” to them, for all they’ve done for our neighborhood, and for helping me call this neighborhood “home”.

Coming September 28, 2021

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