Your browser is not supported. For the best experience, you should upgrade to a modern browser with improved speed and security.

A Girl Called Problem

Thirteen-year-old Shida, whose name means "problem" in Swahili, certainly has a lot of problems in her life -- her father is dead, her depressed mother is rumored to be a witch, her family bears the weight of a curse, and everyone in her rural Tanzanian village expects her to marry rather than pursue her dream of becoming a healer.

So when the elders of Litongo make a controversial decision to move Shida's people to a nearby village, Shida welcomes the change. Surely the opportunity to go to school and learn from a nurse can only mean good things. Nonetheless, mysterious calamities plague Shida's people after their move. Desperate to stay, Shida must prove to her people that life can be better in their new home.

For more stories of girls and women overcoming poverty, visit A Mighty Girl's Poverty / Hardship section.

Current Price:

  • Featured
  • Lowest
Prices as of 10/20/20 08:31
Product prices and availability are accurate as of the date/time indicated and are subject to change. Any price and availability information displayed on at the time of purchase will apply to the purchase of this product.

Where to Purchase:

What's this?

Support A Mighty Girl & Help Grow Mighty Girls!

It's easy to support A Mighty Girl's girl empowerment mission. Every time you purchase resources using the vendor buttons on our website, A Mighty Girl receives a small commission – all at no added cost to you. Thank you for helping us to provide these resources for everyone raising Mighty Girls!


"Shida is thrilled to learn to read in her rough one-room schoolhouse, and her dream is to train with the village nurse. She is encouraged by her wise grandfather, Babu, an ardent follower of the adored new president, Nyerere, who supports women’s education and has freed the people from white colonialism. But many villagers, including Shida’s widowed, depressed mother and the boys in the classroom, are hostile to girls being educated and leaving the traditional ways....Quirk spent two years in Tanzania, and this original paperback includes a detailed Swahili glossary with notes and photos." -- Hazel Rochman, Booklist

Product Details

Recommended Age 9 - 14
Author Katie Quirk
ISBN 0802854044
Publication Date Apr 19, 2013
Publisher Eerdmans Books for Young Readers
Language English