By Supriya Kelkar

Hardcover: out of stock

In 1942, after Mahatma Gandhi asks Indians to give one family member to the freedom movement, ten-year-old Anjali is devastated to think of her father risking his life for the freedom struggle.

But it turns out he isn’t the one joining. Anjali’s mother is. And with this change comes many more adjustments designed to improve their country and use “ahimsa”—non-violent resistance—to stand up to the British government. First the family must trade in their fine foreign-made clothes for homespun cotton, so Anjali has to give up her prettiest belongings. Then her mother decides to reach out to the Dalit community, the “untouchables” of society. Anjali is forced to get over her past prejudices as her family becomes increasingly involved in the movement.

When Anjali’s mother is jailed, Anjali must step out of her comfort zone to take over her mother’s work, ensuring that her little part of the independence movement is completed.         

Inspired by her great-grandmother’s experience working with Gandhi, New Visions Award winner Supriya Kelkar shines a light on the Indian freedom movement in this poignant debut.

About the Creators

Thumb_supriya Supriya Kelkar - Author

was born and raised in the Midwest. She learned Hindi as a child by watching three Bollywood films a week. After college she realized her lifelong dream of working in the film industry when she got a job as a Bollywood screenwriter. She has credits on one Hollywood film and several Hindi films. AHIMSA, inspired by her great-grandmother’s role in the Indian freedom movement, is her debut middle-grade novel. Supriya still lives in the Midwest with her husband, their three children, and a very hyper dog.

About This Title


Hardcover: 9781620143568


New Visions Award Winner
Tu Books

Starred Review
School Library Journal

Starred Review

Amelia Bloomer Project - Feminist Task Force
American Library Association (ALA)

Notable Social Studies Trade Books for Young People
National Council for the Social Studies/ Children's Book Council

Guided Reading:




Interest Level:

Grades 3 - 7

Reading Level:

Grades 3 - 7


Asian/Asian American Interest, Childhood Experiences and Memories, Civil Rights Movement, Collaboration, Conflict resolution, Cultural Diversity, Discrimination, Dreams & Aspirations, Education, Empathy/Compassion, Families, Friendship, Gratitude, Heroism, History, Home, India, Informational Text, Integrity/Honesty , Kindness/Caring, Leadership, Mentors, Mothers, Muslim/Muslim American Interest, Overcoming Obstacles, Persistence/Grit, Poverty, Pride, Protest, Realistic Fiction, Respect/Citizenship, Responsibility, Teen Interest, Tolerance/Acceptance, War, YA interest

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