Tag Archives: Travel

Leilong’s Too Long!

LeilongEvery morning, Leilong the brontosaurus shuttles through the city, picking up children for school. But he is longer than a tennis court, and he weighs as much as five elephants. He breaks bridges and knocks over houses. He feels awkward in the city. There are so many complaints that the school is forced to take its brontosaurus bus off the road. The children find a way to help Leilong fit in. He becomes the city’s most popular playground. The imaginative cartoon illustrations are rendered in crayon and watercolor and have a child-like quality. This book follows the bestselling Leilong the Library Bus (2021). mjw
Title: Leilong’s Too Long
Author: Julia Liu
Illustrator
: Bei Lynn
Publisher
: Gecko Press. New Zealand
Copyright
: 2022
Original Language
: Chinese
Translator
: Helen Wang
Original Title
: Riding A Brontosaurus To School
Original Copyright
: 2017
ISBN
: 978-1-77657-433-9
Hardcover pages
: 28
Age range
: 2-5
Genre
: Picture book
Author’s ethnicity
: Taiwanese
Author’s residence
: Taiwan
Illustrator’s ethnicity
: Taiwanese
Illustrator’s residence
: Taiwan
Subjects
: Brontosaurus, Bus, Dinosaurs, Imagination, School bus, Transportation

Born Behind Bars

Born Behind Bars

Nine-year-old, low-caste Kabir was born in jail in Chennai, India, because his mom is serving time for a crime she didn’t commit. He ends up living on the streets when a new warden decides that he is too old to still be living in jail. He meets Rani, a Roma girl, who helps him survive in the harsh, ugly outside world. He eventually finds his grandparents and a helpful lawyer who gets his mother released from jail. This story told through the lens of a young boy is both educating and entertaining. Kabir is brave and optimistic. Like Venkatraman’s other books, A Time To Dance, Climbing The Stairs, and The Bridge Home, this book is unforgettable. mjw

Title: Born Behind Bars
Author: Padma Venkatraman
Publisher
: Nancy Paulsen Books, an imprint of Penguin Random House, LLC
Copyright
: 2021
Original Language
: English
ISBN
: 978-0593-11247-2
Hardcover pages
: 273
Age range
: 10 up
Genre
: Fiction, Novel
Book setting
: Chennai, India
Author’s ethnicity
: Indian
Author’s residence
: U.S.
Awards
: 2022 NCSS Notable Books, 2022 South Asia Award Winner
Subjects
: Homelessness, India, Poverty, Prejudice, Prisoners’ families, School, Street children

Bandoola: The Great Elephant Rescue

Bandoola

The colored pencil drawings are stunningly beautiful in this incredible true story about war veteran James Howard Williams; Bandoola, a working elephant; and Po Toke, the elephant’s keeper. They work together on a teak plantation in Myanmar (Burma), a country in Southeast Asia that was a colony of the British Empire. When World War II forces them to evacuate their home in the jungle, they lead a group of over 200 refugees and over 50 elephants across mountainous terrain to safety in Assam, India. A table of contents, a map, a wonderfully illustrated glossary, suggestions for further reading, and an author’s note add to this highly educational masterpiece. mjw

Title: Bandoola: The Great Elephant Rescue
Author: William Grill
Illustrator
: William Grill
Publisher
: Flying Eye Books, an imprint of Nobrow Ltd. London
Copyright
: 2021
Original Language
: English
ISBN
: 978-1-83874-123-8
Hardcover pages
: 88
Age range
: 8-14
Genre
: Picture Book, Information Book, Nonfiction
Book setting
: Myanmar and India
Author’s ethnicity
: English
Author’s residence
: London
Illustrator’s ethnicity
: English
Illustrator’s residence
: London
Awards
: Author /Illustrator has won the 2015 Kate Greenaway Medal
Subjects
: Asian history, Burma, Deforestation, Elephants, Green living, Jungle, Logging industry, Monsoons, Mountains, Rainforests, Timber, Timber elephants, World War II

Last Witnesses (Adapted for Young Adults)

Last witnesses

A very helpful Historical Context sets the scene for 65 short personal narratives told by those who were Russian children during World War II and survived terrifying war-time experiences. Nobel Prize-winning Svetlana Alexievich discloses the traumatic memories of children who were separated from their parents, most of them never to be reunited. This is the young adult adaptation of her masterpiece, Last Witness: An Oral History of the Children of WWII. The Russian perspective stories are fascinating as they portray terror, survival, and hope. The book also features a useful glossary. mjw

Title: Last Witnesses (Adapted for Young Adults)
Author: Svetlana Alexievich
Publisher
: Penguin Random House LLC
Copyright
: 2021
Original Language
: Russian
Translator
: Richard Pevear and Larissa Volokhonsky
Original Title
: Last Witnesses: An Oral History Of The Children Of WWII
Original Publisher
: Molodaya Gvardiya, Moscow
Original Copyright
: 1985
ISBN
: 978-0-593-30853-0
Hardcover pages
: 288
Age range
: 12-17
Genre
: Information book, Nonfiction, Oral history
Book setting
: Russia
Author’s ethnicity
: Ukrainian
Author’s residence
: Soviet Union, Belarus, Western Europe
Awards
: Author has won the 2015 Nobel Prize for Literature. 2022 NCSS Notable Books
Subjects
: Childhood, Death, Historical biographies, Hope, Military history, Oral history, Resilience, Survival, Terror, WWII, Young adult

189 Canaries

189 CanariesYellow canaries sing melodies to the silver miners in the Harz Mountains in Germany. Today, a bird dealer has come to put the canaries into individual wooden cages and take them on a voyage by train and then by steamship across the Atlantic Ocean to bustling New York City. Beautiful mixed media illustrations enhance this fascinating story about the little-known history of the canaries and their lovely melodies. Back matter includes notes on the history of canaries and the ways they were used and transported by humans in the 1800s. In the year 1882 alone, 120,000 canaries were shipped to New York City. A map of their journey is featured on the book’s endpapers. mjw
Title: 189 Canaries
Author: Dieter Boge
Illustrator
: Elsa Klever
Publisher
: Eerdmans Book for Young Readers. Grand Rapids, Michigan
Copyright
: 2021
Original Language
: German
Translator
: Laura Watkinson
Original Title
: 189
Original Publisher
: Aladin Verlag, an imprint of Thienemann-Esslinger. Stuttgart
Original Copyright
: 2020
ISBN
: 978-0-8028-5574-9
Hardcover pages
: 48
Age range
: 6-10
Genre
: Picture Book
Book setting
: Germany and United States
Author’s ethnicity
: German
Author’s residence
: Germany
Illustrator’s ethnicity
: German
Illustrator’s residence
: Germany
Awards
: 2022 USBBY Outstanding International Books List. Author has won the German Youth Literature Prize and has been included in the White Ravens Catalog
Subjects
: Birds, Canaries, Harz Mountains, Home, Miners, Voyages

Red Stars: The Case Of Viktor And Nadya’s Notebooks

Red Stars- The Case...

Diary entries, maps, drawings, and historical photos tell this story of Viktor and Nadya, twelve-year-old twins who were evacuated from Leningrad when Hitler declared war on the Soviet Union. They were separated when they were put on trains that were meant to take them to safety. The story is told in three voices, alternating between Viktor (printed in red), Nadya (printed in dark blue), and an offstage voice of a Soviet Secret Police officer. His handwritten comments are written in the margins. Viktor’s train makes it to Moscow, where he is expected to do hard labor on a kolkhoz (farm). It is rumored that Nadya’s train was bombed with no survivors. Viktor doesn’t believe this and sets off through cold and harsh conditions to find Nadya. They eventually find each other and unravel a mystery of treason and betrayal at the highest level of Soviet leadership. mjw

Title: Red Stars: The Case Of Viktor And Nadya’s Notebooks
Author: Davide Morosinotto
Illustrator
: Simone Tso
Publisher
: Delacorte Press
Copyright
: 2020
Original Language
: Italian
Translator
: Denise Muir
Original Title
:  La Stolgorante luce di due stelle rosse
Original Publisher
: Mondadori, Milan
Original Copyright
: 2017
ISBN
: 978-1-9848-9332-1
Hardcover pages
: 432
Age range
: 10-12
Genre
: Historical Fiction
Book setting
: Soviet Union
Author’s ethnicity
: Italian
Author’s residence
: Italy
Subjects
: European historical fiction, Evacuation, Germany, Hitler, Leningrad, MIlitary fictioon, Siblings, Trains, World War II

The Crow And The Peacock

The Crow and the PeaockCrow sets off on a journey to find happiness. He first meets a gentle dove. Dove says that he thought he was the happiest bird alive until he heard Nightingale. So Crow goes to hear Nightingale, who says he thought he was happy until he heard Rooster. Crow then visits Rooster and is told that Swan must be the happiest bird alive. Finally he is encouraged to see Peacock, who truly must be the happiest bird in the world. Peacock says that once he was happy, but the emperor put him in a cage and all he wanted then was to be free to fly like a crow. So Crow flies back to the woods knowing that he is happy with his life and that all he wants is to share his happiness. This beautiful fable about happiness is illustrated in glorious, joyful colors. mjw
Title: The Crow And The Peacock
Author: Jo Fernihough
Illustrator
: Jo Fernihough
Publisher
: Eerdmans Books for Young Readers. Grand Rapids, Michigan
Copyright
: 2021
Original Language
: English
Original Publisher:
Oxford University Press. Oxford, England
Original Copyright
: 2020
ISBN
: 978-0-8028-5568-8
Hardcover pages
: 32
Age range
: 4-8
Genre
: Picture Book. Fable
Author’s ethnicity
: British
Author’s residence
: Cambridge, England
Illustrator’s ethnicity
: British
Illustrator’s residence
: Cambridge, England
Subjects
: Birds, Fables, Happiness

Fauja Singh Keeps Going: The True Story Of The Oldest Person To Ever Run A Marathon

This is the true story of Fauja Singh, the first one-hundred-year-old to run a marathon. He was born with legs that didn’t work in a Punjab village.  He could not play with his friends or walk to school, but that did not stop him. He worked on his family’s farm and grew stronger. Throughout his life he made his mind, body, and heart stronger. At age 81, he ran his first marathon. He has broken many records and became the first person over one hundred (centenarian) to complete a marathon. The beautiful and enlivening illustrations were created digitally using hand drawings and collage pieces. A forward written by Fauja Singh introduces the book.  Back matter includes a list of his world records and a photograph of him today. mjw
Title: Fauja Singh Keeps Going: The True Story Of The Oldest Person To Ever Run A MarathonHannah’s Winter
Author: Simran Jeet Singh
Illustrator
: Baljinder Kaur
Publisher
: Kokila, an imprint of Penguin Random House. New York
Copyright
: 2020
Original Language
: English
ISBN
: 978-0-525555094
Hardcover pages
: 48
Age range
: 4-8
Genre
: Picture book, Biography
Book setting
: Punjab, India; England; New York City; Toronto
Author’s ethnicity
: Indian
Author’s residence
: New York
Illustrator’s residence
: England
Subjects
: Biography, Centenarians, Marathons, Punjabi, Running, Sikh, Track and field

My Favorite Memories

This gentle story tells of a young girl who is moving to a new country. She has a suitcase in which to pack her most favorite things. She wants to take her aquarium, a wooden chair, the pear tree outside, her best friend, and even the bus driver, but these things are all too big. She comes to understand that while we can’t always carry our favorite things physically, we can travel with them in other ways. The charming illustrations complement this hopeful story of change and resilience. mjw
Title: My Favorite Memories
Author: Sepideh Sarihi
Illustrator
: Julie Volk
Publisher
: Blue Dot Kids Press. San Francisco, CA
Copyright
: 2020
Original Language
: German
Translator
: Elisabeth Lauffer
Original Title
: Meine liebsten Dinge müssen mit
Original Publisher
: Beltz & Gelberg
Original Copyright
: 2018
ISBN
: 978-1-7331212-4-8
Hardcover pages
: 32
Age range
: 5-8
Genre
: Picture Book
Author’s ethnicity
: Iranian
Author’s residence
: Germany
Illustrator’s ethnicity
: Austrian
Illustrator’s residence
: Vienna
Awards
: 2020 Bologna Ragazzi Award, Illustrator has won the White Raven Award
Subjects
: Change, Emotions, Moving, Permanence, New experiences

Little Wise Wolf

Little Wise Wolf lives far away on the other side of the mountains. He reads big books, knows a lot, and is very proud. When various animals come to him to get answers to their difficult questions, he has no time for them. One day a big black bird flies to Little Wise Wolf’s house to tell him that the king is ill and needs his help. Little Wise Wolf takes off, wearing his red boots, and riding on his bicycle to visit the king at the palace. He discovers along the way that he has much to learn from his friends about the real world. He gives the king some medicine and the king wants him to stay and be his royal doctor, but Little Wise Wolf decides that he needs to go back to his friends and his books. Enchanting illustrations of the little animals enhance this important book about friendship. mjw
Title: Little Wise Wolf
Author: Gijs van der Hammen
Illustrator
: Hanneke Siemensma
Publisher
: Kids Can Press
Copyright
: 22020
Original Language
: Dutch
Translator
: Laura Watkinson
Original Title
: Kleine wijze wolf
Original Publisher
: Uitgeverij Hoogland. Hoorn, The Netherlands
Original Copyright
: 2017
ISBN
: 978-1-525305498
Hardcover pages
: 32
Age range
: 4-8
Genre
: Picture book
Author’s ethnicity
: Dutch
Author’s residence
: The Netherlands
Illustrator’s ethnicity
: Dutch
Illustrator’s residence
: The Netherlands
Awards
: Nominated for the CILIP Kate Greenaway Medal
Subjects
: Books, Friendship, Kings, Reading, Wolves

Anita And The Dragons

Anita and the DragonsYoung Anita lives in a village in the Dominican Republic where she is a valiant princesa. She worries about boarding dragons (airplanes) that will take her to a new life in a new country. The vivid text describes her anxiety about what she will miss and what she will encounter in a new land. She becomes a brave princesa when she meets the dragon. “With one step I move away from the familiar. With another step, I walk into the unknown.” She becomes a “fearless dragon” of her own. The textured artwork was created using mixed media and finished digitally. mjw
Title: Anita And The Dragons
Author: Hannah Carmona
Illustrator
: Anna Cunha
Publisher
: Lantana Publishing Ltd.
Copyright
: 2021
Original Language
: English
ISBN
: 978-1-911373-63-6
Hardcover pages
: 32
Age range
: 7-10
Genre
: Picture Book
Book setting
: Dominican Republic
Author’s ethnicity
: U.S.
Author’s residence
: Tennessee
Illustrator’s ethnicity
: Brazilian
Illustrator’s residence
: Brazil
Subjects
: Airplanes, Central America, Social situations

Amrita Sher-gil: Rebel With A Paintbrush

This beautiful, well-researched book tells the story of modern Indian artist Amrita Sher-Gil’s short, but fascinating life. She was born in Hungary in 1913. Her mother was a Hungarian pianist and her father was an Indian Sikh. Amrita was raised in Hungary and trained in France. She was inspired by writers, musicians, artists, and the time she lived – world wars, the Indian freedom movement, and major changes in the art world. The set-up of the book is amazing. The text that tells Amrita’s story is woven around pictures and boxes of information. Political events and artistic movements that shaped her life are found in other boxes. Real photographs, sometimes taken by her father, are included in the margins, and reproductions of Amrita’s gorgeous paintings are also spread throughout the book. Back matter provides a section called Why Was Amritas’s Art Important? and another section of interesting references. mjw
Title: Amrita Sher-gil: Rebel With A Paintbrush
Author: Anita Vachharajani
Illustrator
: Kalyani Ganapathy
Publisher
: Harper Collins Children’s Books
Copyright
: 2018
Original Publisher:
Harper Collins Children’s Books. India
Original Copyright
: 2018
ISBN
: 978-93-5277-473-9
Hardcover pages
: 184
Age range
: 10 up
Genre
: Information book, Biography, Nonfiction
Book setting
: Hungary, India, France, Pakistan
Author’s ethnicity
: Indian
Author’s residence
: Mumbai
Illustrator’s ethnicity
: Indian
Illustrator’s residence
: Nilgiris
Awards
: 2020 USBBY Honor List
Subjects
: Art Biography, India, Indian freedom, Hungary, Painting