Tag Archives: Friends

Hello, Crow!

Franny is a dreamer. Her dad calls her Franny Featherhead. She loves listening to the cries of the birds in the branches outside.  To her, every bug, every leaf, and every petal is shimmering with wonder. She meets a crow that brings her presents in its beak.  Her dad doesn’t believe that she can have a crow as a friend, so she takes him out to her favorite spot to wait for the crow, to prove that they are friends. Information about crows is included in this fun story illustrated with vivid drawings. mjw
Title: Hello, Crow!
Author: Candace Savage
Illustrator
: Chelsea O’Byrne
Publisher
: Greystone Kids Books
Copyright
: 2019
Original Language
: English
ISBN
: 978-1-77164-444-0
Hardcover pages
: 32
Age range
: 4-8
Genre
: Picture Book
Author’s ethnicity
: Canadian
Author’s residence
: Saskatchewan, Canada
Illustrator’s ethnicity
: Canadian
Illustrator’s residence
: Vancouver, Canada
Subjects
: Animal behavior, Birds, Crows, Outdoor activities, Self-esteem

Greyfriars Bobby: A Puppy’s Tale

Today, visitors to Edinburgh, Scotland, come from all over the world to see Bobby’s statue and to lay flowers and sticks on his grave.  Bobby was the wee faithful Skye Terrier who patrolled Scotland’s streets with local policeman John Gray.  This story tells of Bobby’s early days when he and an orphaned boy named Sandy caught a pickpocket and how he met his master John Gray.  After John Gray died in 1858, the loyal dog lay beside his master’s grave in Greyfriar’s churchyard every day for fourteen years.  A glossary defines Scottish words.  Lively illustrations bring the Victorian streets of Edinburgh to life. mjw
Title: Greyfriar’s Bobby: A Puppy’s Tale
Author: Michelle Sloan
Illustrator: Elena Bia
Publisher
: Kelpies, an imprint of Floris Books
Copyright
: 2019
Original Language
: English 
ISBN
: 978-178250-590-7
Hardcover pages
: 32
Age range
: 4-7
Genre
: Picture Book, Historical Fiction
Book setting
: Edinburgh, Scotland 
Author’s ethnicity
: Scottish
Author’s residence
: Brought Ferry, Scotland
Illustrator’s ethnicity
: Italian
Illustrator’s residence
: Novara, Italy
Subjects
: Dogs, Loyalty, Policemen, Scottish folklore

Lubna And Pebble

Lubna lives with her father and brothers in a world of tents.  Her best friend is a shiny, smooth, gray pebble.  She draws a happy face on it and keeps it warm wrapped in a tea towel in a shoebox.  She tells the pebble about home, the war, and that she loves it.  Soon, a little boy arrives.  At first, he has no words.  He coughs, sneezes, smiles, and says his name is Amir.  Lubna and Amir become friends.  One day, Lubna’s daddy announces that they are leaving because they have found a home.  Lubna feels happy, then sad.  Amir cries. Lubna gives Amir her pebble.  He needs it more than she does.  Larger-than-life, stunning illustrations complement this powerful story. mjw
Title: Lubna And Pebble
Author: Wendy Meddour
Illustrator
: Daniel Egneus
Publisher
: Dial Books for Young Readers. New York
Copyright
: 2019
Original Language
: English
ISBN
: 978-052-5554-165
Hardcover pages
: 32
Age range
: 4-8
Genre
: Picture Book
Book setting
: Middle East
Author’s ethnicity
: English
Author’s residence
: England
Illustrator’s ethnicity
: Swedish
Illustrator’s residence
: Athens, Greece
Awards; 2020 USBBY Outstanding International Books List
Subjects
: Refugees

The Dot (The Dot That Couldn’t Sit Still)

Once upon a time there was a dot in the big broad universe.  One day, it gets tired of sitting still and starts to move around. The dot meets other dots and together they make shapes – squares, rectangles, triangles, and circles.  The shapes realize they can make a house. They are amazed by what they can make if they work together – highrises, the sun, the moon, and even a boy, a girl, and a cat.  The brief text is accompanied by stark black and white drawings with bright red, yellow, and orange accents.  The book is a celebration of creativity. mjw
Title: The Dot
Author: Gulnar Hajo
Illustrator
: Gulnar Hajo
Publisher
: Darf Children’s Books. London
Copyright
: 201
Original Language
: Arabic
Translator
: Ruth Ahmedzai Kemp
Original Title
: Hekayat Nuqta’ala dafter abyadh
Original Publisher
: Bright Fingers Publishing House. Damascus, Syria
Original Copyright
: 2014
ISBN
: 978-1-85077-329-0
Paperback pages
: 20
Age range
: 4-8
Genre
: Picture Book
Author’s ethnicity
: Syrian
Author’s residence
: Istanbul
Illustrator’s ethnicity
: Syrian
Illustrator’s residence
: Istanbul
Subjects
: Creativity, Shapes, Universe

A Boy And A House

This wordless book is the story of a boy wandering down dark Grimm Street past interesting street and window scenes.  When he gets to #34 Andersen Street, he sees a cat in an open doorway.  He follows the cat up a stairway where there are discarded drawings on the floor, which he collects.  The sepia-toned watercolor paintings are full of enticing details. The two mice on each page are especially fun.  The boy journeys through the house, drawn forever forward until he reaches a lovely surprise.  Each page in the book is more amazing than the last. mjw
Title: A Boy And A House
Author: Maja Kastelic
Illustrator
: Maja Kastelic
Publisher
: Annick Press
Copyright
: 2018
Original Language
: Slovenian
Original Title
: Decek in Hisa
Original Publisher
: Mladinska Knjiga Zalozba
Original Copyright
: 2015
ISBN
: 978-1-77321-055-1
Hardcover pages
: 32
Age range
: 4-7
Genre
: Wordless Picture Book
Book setting
: Slovenian townhouse
Author’s ethnicity
: Slovenian
Author’s residence
: Slovenia
Illustrator’s ethnicity
: Slovenian
Illustrator’s residence
: Slovenia
Awards
: White Ravens List
Subjects
: Cats, Companionship, Discovery, Houses, Stories without words, Surprises

Birdsong

In spring, Katherena and her mother pack up their belongings and move from their home in the city by the sea.  Their new home sits on a hill overlooking a field and another home.  An older woman named Agnes lives in that home.  In summer, Katherena visits Agnes, whose yard is filled with berries, flowers, and birds.  In fall, Katherena visits Agnes again and again and they talk about the moon and the seasons.  In winter, it’s harder for Agnes to get around and Katherena draws pictures.  In the next spring, Agnes has grown weaker and Katherena decorates Agnes’s room with all of her drawings.  The textured illustrations in this book were rendered in TBC.  They warmly depict the story of a young girl and an elderly woman who share their love of nature and art.  A glossary explains Cree words that are integrated into the text. mjw
Title: Birdsong
Author: Julie Flett
Illustrator
: Julie Flett
Publisher
: Greystone Books Ltd.
Copyright
: 2019
Original Language
: English
ISBN
: 978-1-77164-473-0
Hardcover pages
: 48
Age range
: 3-8
Genre
: Picture Book
Author’s ethnicity
: Cree-Metis
Author’s residence
: Vancouver, Canada
Illustrator’s ethnicity
: Cree-Metis
Illustrator’s residence
: Vancouver, Canada
Awards: 2020 ALA American Indian Literature Award, 2020 USBBY Outstanding International Books List
Subjects
: Emotions, Indigenous, Intergenerational friendship, Nature, Seasons

The Princess Dolls

In 1942 Vancouver, nine-year-old best friends Esther and Michiko spot Princess Elizabeth and Princess Margaret dolls in their local toyshop.  They hope they can have the dolls as presents for their shared birthday. But when Esther receives a doll and Michiko doesn’t, their friendship begins to fall apart.  The story is set during a time of increasing hostility and attacks upon Japanese Canadians.  Michiko and her family are sent away to an internment camp.  Esther is Jewish and her family worries about the fate of relatives who remain in Europe.  The story does resolve in a heartwarming way.  Charming black and white drawings complement this gentle story about friendship. mjw
Title: The Princess Dolls
Author: Ellen Schwartz
Illustrator
: Mariko Ando
Publisher
: Tradewind Books. Vancouver
Copyright
: 2018
Original Language
: English
ISBN
: 978-1-926890-29-6
Paperback pages
: 224
Age range
: 8-11
Genre
: Historical Fiction
Book setting
: Vancouver, British Columbia
Author’s ethnicity
: Canadian
Author’s residence
: Burnaby, British Columbia
Illustrator’s ethnicity
: Japanese
Illustrator’s residence
: Vancouver, British Columbia
Subjects
: Canadian history, Dolls, Injustice, Japanese internment, Racism, Toys, World War II

The Color Of The Sun

This story takes place in one day of Davie’s life in Tyneside, his small town home.  He takes off on a journey after what appears to be the murder of a boy he knows.  Half real and half imagined, he meets characters from his town, which has rival gangs,. Davie thinks he knows who the murderer is.  As the story progresses, it gets harder to fathom what is real.  The ending is brilliant and leaves readers feeling positive and hopeful.  The book is beautifully written. mjw
Title: The Color Of The Sun
Author: David Almond
Publisher
: Candlewick Press
Copyright
: 2019
Original Language
: English
Original Publisher
: Hachette Children’s Group. U.K.
Original Copyright
: 2018
ISBN
: 978-1-5362-0785-9
Hardcover pages
: 224
Age range
: 12 up
Genre
: Fiction, Fantasy
Book setting
: England
Author’s ethnicity
: English
Author’s residence
: Newcastle upon Tyne, U.K.
Awards
: Hans Christian Andersen Medal, Carnegie Medal
Subjects
: Adventure, Coming of Age, Death and dying, Violence, Young adult boys

Bilal Cooks Daal

Six-year-old Bilal helps his dad make his favorite food – daal.  The slow cooked dish from South Asia requires many ingredients and patience. Bilal’s diverse friends are excited to try the new dish.  They break naan around the table and share the steamy, garlicky, salty, sweet, creamy daal.  They all agree that it tastes great.  The colorful illustrations were rendered digitally. An author’s note explains that daal is known as lentils in English.  A recipe for chana daal with split chickpeas is also included. mjw
Title: Bilal Cooks Daal
Author: Aisha Saeed
Illustrator
: Anoosha Syed
Publisher
: Salaam Reads, an imprint of Simon & Schuster Children’s Publishing Division
Copyright
: 2019
Original Language
: English
ISBN
: 978-1-534418103
Hardcover pages
: 40
Age range
: 4-8
Genre
: Picture Book
Author’s ethnicity
: Pakistani-American
Author’s residence
: Atlanta, Georgia. U.S.
Illustrator’s ethnicity
: Pakistaani-Canadian
Illustrator’s residence
: Toronto, Canada
Awards: 2020 ALA Asian/Pacific American Award for Literature
Subjects
: Bi-racial, Celebrations, Cooking, Cultural differences, Cultural traditions, Family relationships, Friendship, Lentils, Pakistani, Patience

Girl Of The Southern Sea

Fourteen-year-old Nia lives in the slums of Jakarta, Java, with her father and her little brother. She dreams of attending high school and becoming a writer, but school is too expensive.  Her father runs a banana fritter cart near the railway station, but the money he makes usually just supports his drinking habit.  He is an unhappy and weak man who disappears for days, so Nia has to raise her little brother.  A series of unfortunate events leads to Nia’s father’s plan to marry Nia off to a much older man.  Nia overcomes all the obstacles and determines her own future.  A map of Indonesia and a glossary are included. mjw
Title: Girl Of The Southern Sea
Author: Michelle Kadarusman
Publisher
: Pajama Press, Toronto
Copyright
: 2019
Original Language
: English
ISBN
: 978-1-77278-081-9
Hardcover pages
: 224
Age range
: 9-12
Genre
: Fiction
Book setting
: Jakarta, Java, Indonesia
Author’s ethnicity
: Grew up in Melbourne, has lived in Indonesia
Author’s residence
: Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Awards: 2020 USBBY Outstanding International Book List
Subjects
: Asian literature, Authors, Fantasy, Homelessness, Mythology, Poverty, Self-esteem and self-reliance, Slums, Teenage marriage

My Sweet Orange Tree

Zeze, a precocious five-year-old born to a poor family in the slums of Rio de Janeiro, taught himself to read at a very young age and wants to grow up to be “a poet with a bow tie.” Zeze is a naughty child with a heart of gold.  He plays clever pranks on his neighbors and is punished severely for them by his parents. Imaginative Zeze adopts a small orange tree that grows in his yard as his magical friend.  Inspired by the author’s childhood, the book is a Brazilian classic, adopted by schools and adapted for cinema, television, and the stage. It has been translated into nineteen languages. mjw
Title: My Sweet Orange Tree
Author: Jose Mauro De Vasconcelos (1920-1984)
Publisher
: Candlewick Press
Copyright
: 2019
Original Language
: Portuguese
Translator
: Alison Entrekin
Original Title
: Meu pe de laranja lima
Original Publisher
: Editora melhoramentos Ltda, Brazil
Original Copyright
: 1968
ISBN
: 978-1-5362-0328-8
Hardcover pages
: 272
Age range
: 14-17
Genre
: Autobiographical novel
Book setting
: Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Author’s ethnicity
: Brazilian
Subjects
: Abuse, Imagination, Magic, Orange trees, Poverty

Bounce Back: Zayd Saleem, Chasing The Dream

This is the third in a series about Pakistani-American fourth-grade basketball player Zayd Saleem. An ankle injury leaves him on the sidelines just as he is about to become team captain of the Gold Team. He is on the bench for several weeks and worries about how he can help his team win the championship.  Meanwhile, at home, his family is preparing Pakistani wedding festivities for his uncle. Specific cultural information is smoothly integrated into this universal story.  Black and white drawings enhance the text. mjw
Title: Bounce Back: Zayd Saleem, Chasing The Dream
Author: Hena Khan
Illustrator
: Sally Wern Comport
Publisher
: Salaam Reads, an imprint of Simon & Schuster Children’s Publishing Division
Copyright
: 2018
Original Language
: English
ISBN
: 978-1-534412057
Hardcover pages
: 144
Age range
: 7-11
Genre
: Fiction
Author’s ethnicity
: Pakistani-American
Author’s residence
: Rockville, Maryland. U.S.
Illustrator’s ethnicity
: U.S.
Illustrator’s residence
: U.S.
Subjects
: Basketball, Family life,Leadership, Middle schools, Muslims, Urdu, Weddings