Tag Archives: Families

Mexique: A Refugee Story From The Spanish Civil War

On May 27,1937, 456 children sailed on the Mexique from Spain to Morelia, Mexico, to escape the violence of the Spanish Civil War. It was supposed to be a short trip, but they stayed for a long time and many never returned to Spain because of Francisco Franco’s dangerous dictatorship after the war. The haunting, dark, images in the book are based on photographs of the “Children of Morelia” and the ship that brought them to Mexico. mjw
Title: Mexique: A Refugee Story From The Spanish Civil War
Author: Maria Jose Ferrada
Illustrator
: Ana Penyas
Publisher
: Eerdmans Books for Young Readers
Copyright
: 2020
Original Language
: Spanish
Translator
: Elisa Amado
Original Title
: Mexique: El nombre del barco
Original Publisher
: Alboroto Ediciones, Mexico
Original Copyright
: 2018
ISBN
: 978-0-8028-5545-9
Hardcover pages
: 40
Age range
: 7-10
Genre
: Historical Fiction, Information Book, Nonfiction
Book setting
: Spain, Mexico
Author’s ethnicity
: Chilean
Author’s residence
: Chile
Illustrator’s ethnicity
: Spanish
Illustrator’s residence
: Madrid
Subjects
: Displaced people, Francisco Franco, Mexico, Refugees, Ships, Spain, Spanish Civil War 1936-1939

Ritu Weds Chandni

Young Ayesha can’t wait for her cousin Ritu’s wedding. She is excited about dressing up and dancing in the baraat – the wedding procession. Ayesha’s mother thinks that not everyone will be pleased seeing Ritu leading the lively procession that the groom usually leads. Ritu is marrying her girlfriend Chandni and some people do not understand that kind of love. The vivid illustrations are filled with details, like the lovely red lehengas of the brides and their henna-decorated hands. A helpful glossary explains Hindi words used in the text and an author’s note tells that same-sex marriages are not legally recognized in India. mjw
Title: Ritu Weds Chandni
Author: Ameya Narvankar
Illustrator
: Ameya Narvankar
Publisher
: Yali Books. New York
Copyright
: 2020
Original Language
: English
ISBN
: 978-1-949528-94-7
Hardcover pages
: 36
Age range
: 5-7
Genre
: Picture Book
Book setting
: India
Author’s ethnicity
: Indian
Illustrator’s ethnicity
: Indian
Subjects
: Bigotry, Gay weddings, Hindi, Hinduism, Intolerance, Prejudice, Weddings

Bear And Fred: A World War II Story

This is a touching true story of a Jewish boy hiding during World War II, as told by his teddy bear. He is Fred’s bear and he is very happy. He and Fred do everything together. But one night there is a soft knock at the door.  It is a warning that they would be forced to leave their home. They flee to Amsterdam where Fred goes into hiding, apart from the rest of his family. After the war, Fred and his family are reunited and they move to the United States. An author’s note tells how the bear ended up in the Yad Vashem Museum – the World Holocaust Remembrance Center in Israel. A photo of the real bear is included. This endearing story is illustrated digitally with beautiful drawings. mjw
Title: Bear And Fred
Author: Iris Argaman
Illustrator
: Avi Ofer
Publisher
: Amazon Crossing Kids, New York
Copyright
: 2020
Original Language
: Hebrew
Translator
: Annette Appel
Original Title
: Ha Doobi Shel Fred
Original Publisher
: Hakibbutz Hameucchad. Israel
Original Copyright
: 2016
ISBN
: 978-1-542018234
Hardcover pages
: 48
Age range
: 6-9
Genre
: Picture Book
Book setting
: Holland and U.S.
Author’s ethnicity
: Israeli
Author’s residence
: Israel
Illustrator’s ethnicity
: Israeli
Illustrator’s residence
: Spain
Awards
: Vad Vashem Prize in Israel, Giovanni Arpino Proze for Children’s Literature in Italy.
Subjects
: Holocaust, Jewish people, Nazi party, Prejudice and racism, Teddy bear

Piglettes

This laugh-aloud coming-of-age story tells of the bicycle road trip across France to Paris of three teenage girls, Mirielle, Astrid, and Hakima. The girls were voted by their classmates on Facebook to be the ugliest girls in their school. They take off on their bikes, accompanied by Kader, Hakima’s wheelchair-bound older brother. Their goal is a garden party with the French president. They pull a trailer along with them and sell sausages to make money for the trip. The girls, known as the Piglettes, become stars of social media and television. The story is told through the eyes of funny, philosophical, and awkward Mirielle. This is a powerful book for self-conscious teens. mjw
Title: Piglettes
Author: Clementine Beauvais
Publisher
: Pushkin Press
Copyright
: 2017
Original Language
: French
Translator
: Clementine Beauvais
Original Title
: Les Petites Reines
Original Publisher
: Editions Sarbacane. Paris
Original Copyright
: 2014
ISBN
: 978-1782691204
Paperback pages
: 287
Age range
: 12 up
Genre
: Fiction
Book setting
: France
Author’s ethnicity
: French
Author’s residence
: U.K.
Awards
: Prix Sorcieres in France
Subjects
: Bicycles, Bullying, Coming of age, Cyber-bullying, Feminism, Girls and women, Paris, Racism, Roadtrip, Sausages, Teens and young adult fiction, Ugly girls, Wheelchair

Five Sisters

An old couple cares for the woods they live in and desperately wants a family. The old man is given a magic branch from a great white oak tree from which he carves five beautiful Matryoshka dolls – Russian nesting dolls. The dolls come to life, paddle in the stream, and play in the trees. The old woman loves the dolls as daughters. One evening, the old man goes deep into the woods to thank the great white oak for its gift. While he is gone, a wolf stalks up to the cottage. The old man returns in time to rescue the dolls and he takes them to the hollow heart of the oak tree where they are replaced by a real and true daughter. The old couple receives the joy they had always longed for. Striking, traditional illustrations enhance this tale of heartache, hope, and love. mjw
Title: Five Sisters
Author: Stephanie Campisi
Illustrator
: Madalina Andronic
Publisher
: Familius LLC
Copyright
: 2020
Original Language
: English
ISBN
: 978-1-64170-1570
Hardcover pages
: 32
Age range
: 3-8
Genre
: Picture book, Folktale
Author’s ethnicity
: Australian
Author’s residence
: U.S.
Illustrator’s ethnicity
: Romanian
Illustrator’s residence
: Puglia, Italy
Subjects
: Folktales, Matryoshka dolls, Myths, Wolves

The Little Wolves

Four little wolves venture out of their cave alone, while their mother is off hunting. They sniff the forest-scented darkness and see the towering pine trees. They come to a lake and are puzzled by their reflection in the water. They befriend a hedgehog and they even escape a hunter. The wolf babies finally hear their mother’s howl and find the opening to their cave. Mother Wolf is worried sick about her babies. The four little wolves lower their heads and put their tails between their legs and soon all is forgiven. The watercolor illustrations are truly magical. mjw
Title: The Little Wolves
Author: Svenja Herrmann
Illustrator
: Jozef Wilkon
Publisher
: NorthSouth Books, Inc. New York
Copyright
: 2020
Original Language
: German
Translator
: David Henry Wilson
Original Title
: Wolfskinder
Original Publisher
: NordSud Verlag AG. Zurich, Switzerland
Original Copyright
: 2020
ISBN
: 978-0-7358-4397-4
Hardcover pages
: 32
Age range
: 4-8
Genre
: Picture book
Author’s ethnicity
: German
Author’s residence
: Zurich, Switzerland
Illustrator’s ethnicity
: Polish
Illustrator’s residence
: Warsaw, Poland
Subjects
: Baby animals, Wolf, Wolves

Everest: The Remarkable Story Of Edmund Hilary And Tenzing Norgay

After a brief introduction, a section called Why Climb Everest? describes why Hillary and Tenzing’s achievement was so remarkable. Two very different, yet equally determined, men battled frost-biting temperatures, icefalls, snow, wind, and death-defying crevasses to climb to the top of the world’s highest mountain, Everest. The narrative is captivating and the digitally created, breathtaking illustrations are very detailed and loaded with fascinating information. A Table of Contents lists the four parts of the book: The Story of Two Very Different Childhoods, The Race for Everest, Hillary and Tenzing Climb Everest, and Their Stories Continue after Everest. The book is exciting and engaging. mjw
Title: Everest: The Remarkable Story Of Edmund Hilary And Tenzing Norgay
Author: Alexandra Stewart
Illustrator
: Joe Todd-Stanton
Publisher
: Bloomsbury Children’s Books. New York
Copyright
: 2020
Original Language
: English
Original Publisher
: Bloomsbury Publishing Plc. Great Britain
Original Copyright
: 2019
ISBN
: 978-1-5476-0159-2
Hardcover pages
: 64
Age range
: 8-12
Genre
: Information book, Nonfiction, Picture book, Biography
Book setting
: New Zealand, Tibet, Nepal
Author’s ethnicity
: British
Author’s residence
: London
Illustrator’s ethnicity
: British
Illustrator’s residence
: England
Subjects
: Asian history, Mountain climbing, Sherpas, Yaks, Yetis

Under My Tree

When Susanne, who lives in the city, visits her grandmother, she discovers a special tree in the forest. She observes unique things about her tree, such as a family of owls, the rough bark of the tree, the fruit growing on the tree, hundreds of insects, and more. She brings her friend Max to visit her tree. She won’t see her tree much in the winter, but she knows that her tree hibernates and that it will be there when she visits next year.  Integrated into the text are facts about trees and activities that will encourage readers to learn more about trees. The warm illustrations will teach children to appreciate and respect nature. mjw
Title: Under My Tree
Author: Muriel Tallandier
Illustrator
: Mizuho Fujisawa
Publisher
: Blue Dot Kids Press, San Francisco, CA
Copyright
: 2020
Original Language
: French
Translator
: Sarah Klinger
Original Title
: Sous Mon Arbre
Original Publisher
: Editions Grund
Original Copyright
: 2018
ISBN
: 978-1-7331212-3-1
Hardcover pages
: 32
Age range
: 3-8
Genre
: Picture Book, Information book
Author’s ethnicity
: French
Author’s residence
: France
Illustrator’s ethnicity
: Japanese
Illustrator’s residence
: France
Subjects
: Biodiversity, Country life, Environment, Forests, Multigenerational, Trees

Brother’s Keeper

Twelve-year-old Sora and her family live in Communist North Korea in 1950. War is coming and they need to escape.  The family plans to walk the 300 miles from their village to the South Korean city of Busan.  There is a bombing and Sora and her eight-year-old brother Youngsoo are left to get there on their own. It’s winter, and they have to face enemy soldiers, starvation, frostbite, deprivation, and other hardships as they struggle to complete their journey.  This highly engrossing story is loosely based on the author’s mother’s experiences. An author’s note, photographs of the author’s family, a glossary of Korean words, a timeline of the Korean War, and a map of Sora’s journey are included. mjw
Title: Brother’s Keeper
Author: Julie Lee
Publisher
: Holiday House. New York
Copyright
: 2020
Original Language
: English
ISBN
: 978-0823444946
Hardcover pages
: 320
Age range
: 8-12
Genre
: Historical Fiction
Book setting
: Korea
Author’s ethnicity
: Korean
Author’s residence
: U.S.
Subjects
: Asia, Communism, History, Korean War, Military action, North Korea, Refugees,  Siblings, South Korea, War zone, Winter

Priya Dreams Of Marigolds And Masala

Young Priya and her family live in a house in a small city in the United States. It’s the only house on the street with an Indian family. As Priya’s Ba (grandmother) is cooking dinner, Priya asks, “What is India like?” Ba, in her colorful sari, describes special spices, beautiful fabrics, architecture, monsoons, strings of marigolds, and more. At school the next day, Priya tells about India and makes paper marigolds. Her classmates join her and make a long garland of marigolds for Priya’s Ba. “Sharing India with others is the best way to carry it with you.” The vibrant illustrations give readers a look into Indian life. Back matter includes information on meanings, definitions, and pronunciations. An author’s note provides even more information. mjw
Title: Priya Dreams Of Marigolds And Masala
Author: Meenal Patel
Illustrator
: Meenal Patel
Publisher
: Beaver’s Pond Press, Inc. Edina, MN. USA
Copyright
: 2019
Original Language
: English
ISBN
: 978-1-64343-955-6
Hardcover pages
: 36
Age range
: 4-8
Genre
: Picture Book
Book setting
: U.S.
Author’s ethnicity
: Born in the U.S.. Family from Gujarat, India
Author’s residence
: U.S.
Illustrator’s ethnicity
: Born in the U.S.. Family from Gujarat, India
Illustrator’s residence
: U.S.
Awards
: 2020 South Asia Book Award. Grade K-2
Subjects
: Asia, Flowers, Grandmothers, Multigenerational family life, Tradition

Forward Me Back To You

Katina King is a biracial teen with a White single mom. She attends an elite private high school in northern California and is a jiu-jitsu champion. After a sexual assault at her school that she is traumatized by, her mom sends her to Boston to heal with her Grandma Vee. Robin Thorton is eighteen. He was adopted by a wealthy White family in Boston, from an orphanage in India. Kat and Robin meet at the church both Robin and Grandma Vee attend. Both teens are dealing with heavy inner turmoil. They sign up for a summer service trip to Kolkata to work with survivors of human trafficking. A dual narrative depicts Kat’s and Robin’s individual points of view in this timely, unique novel with diverse characters about cross-cultural service. mjw
Title: Forward Me Back To You
Author: Mitali Perkins
Publisher
: Farra Straus Giroux Books for Young Readers. New York
Copyright
: 2019
Original Language
: English
ISBN
: 978-0-374304928
Hardcover pages
: 432
Age range
: 14 up
Genre
: Fiction
Book setting
: Kolkata, India and Boston, MA
Author’s ethnicity
: Born in Kolkata, India
Author’s residence
: California
Awards
: 2020 South Asian Book Award Grade 9 up
Subjects
: Activism, Adoption, Christian fiction, Global awareness, Jiu-jitsu, Human trafficking, Physical and emotional abuse, Religion, Service, Sexual assault, Social justice, Violence, Volunteerism

Hans Christian Andersen: The Journey Of His Life

Through a magical conversation with a young girl in a horse-drawn carriage, Hans Christian Andersen tells his life story. “The most wonderful fairytale is life itself.” He was a cobbler’s son who left his town in Denmark, with thirteen coins in his pocket, to go to Copenhagen to seek his fortune. He wanted to be an actor or a dancer, but things did not work out for him. What he really enjoyed was writing. A sheet of paper became his stage. He wrote poems, stories, fairytales, and plays. He traveled around the country meeting people who loved the theatre – people like himself. Hans goes on to tell the girl some of his stories, such as The Flying Trunk, Thumbelina, The Princess and the Pea, The Ugly Duckling, Clumsy Hans, The Emperor’s New Clothes, and The Snow Queen. The sumptuous illustrations use graphic novel elements to tell the story. In the illustrations, there are references to well-known authors of children’s books and some famous children’s book characters, like The Little Prince, Pinocchio, and more. An author’s note tells more about Hans Christian Andersen’s life. mjw
Title: Hans Christian Andersen: The Journey Of His Life
Author: Heinz Janisch
Illustrator
: Maja Kastelic
Publisher
: NorthSouth Books, Inc., New York
Copyright
: 2020
Original Language
: German
Translator
: David Henry Wilson
Original Title
: Hans Christian Andersen: Die Reise seines Lebens
Original Publisher
: NordSud Verlag AG> Zurich, Switzerland
Original Copyright
: 2020
ISBN
: 978-0-7358-4388-2
Hardcover pages
: 56
Age range
: 4-8
Genre
: Picture Book Biography
Book setting
: Denmark
Author’s ethnicity
: Austrian
Author’s residence
: Vienna
Illustrator’s ethnicity
: Born in Slovenia
Awards
: White Ravens Award – Illustrator
Subjects
: Biography, Denmark, European history, Fairytales, Literary biography