Huda Was Here

Judges Comments

A layered and engaging novel that captivates the reader from its intriguing prologue through to its positive, heartwarming conclusion. Centred on Lebanese Australians, Akeal and his younger sister Huda, it is a fast-paced, stand-alone sequel, told from the perspective of Akeal, through clearly labelled dual narratives. Huda’s strong-willed determination respectively combines with Akeal’s sensitive loyalty to deliver wondrous episodes of suspense, humour and misbehaviour, revealing their love for each other and for their family. This novel creatively and simultaneously explores multicultural Australia, family life, corruption, community, hardship and determination in the context of living as part of a minority group. Humour pervades this delightful story, lifting it to deliver a relatable, skilfully crafted, age-appropriate and engaging mystery adventure.

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