#WorldKidLit Wednesday: Emil and Karl

Written in 1940 on the eve of World War II, Emil and Karl is a gripping read. Set in 1938 Vienna, it tells the story of best friends Emil and Karl, both of whom have lost fathers. They quickly lose their mothers as well. Emil is Jewish; Karl is not.  One is treated cruelly due … Continue reading #WorldKidLit Wednesday: Emil and Karl

#WorldKidLit Wednesday: Temple Alley Summer

Written by award-winning Japanese author Sachiko Kashiwaba, Temple Alley Summer* features not one but two ghost stories. The first is the outer shell in this engrossing middle-grade novel and a fully-fleshed narrative; the other is an embedded fairy-tale fantasy with intriguing connections and parallels to the first. In the “outer” ghost story, Kazu, who is … Continue reading #WorldKidLit Wednesday: Temple Alley Summer

#WorldKidLit Weekend: The Story of the Blue Planet

A Roald Dahlian eco-parable for middle grade readers, The Story of the Blue Planet* takes place on a special, beautiful planet strikingly similar to earth and inhabited only by children. These Peter-Pan-esque protagonists never age and come in all shapes and sizes. Some are “even weird like the child you see in the mirror.” They can … Continue reading #WorldKidLit Weekend: The Story of the Blue Planet

#WorldKidLit Wednesday: The Caiman

What would you do if you found a baby caiman (a type of alligator)? Would you slip it into your shirt pocket? Unlikely as it seems, that’s what Faoro, a jeweler and watchmaker, did many years ago. The Caiman*, a picture book for ages 5-8, is his story—a real one. Faoro loved animals and let them wander … Continue reading #WorldKidLit Wednesday: The Caiman

#WorldKidLit Weekend: The Story of Bodri

An illustrated book for ages 6-10, The Story of Bodri* is based on the experiences of Swedish-Romanian Hédi Fried.  A teenager when she was sent to Auschwitz, author Fried lectures today on racism, democracy, and the Holocaust. She was inspired to write The Story of Bodri when a young attendee at one of her talks asked about … Continue reading #WorldKidLit Weekend: The Story of Bodri

#WorldKidLit Wednesday: Agnes’s Place

Filled with brightly colored, intricately detailed illustrations that reward repeated viewing, Agnes’s Place* is a quiet, sweet picture book for readers 3-7 about friendship, new friends, isolation, and belonging.  When the story begins, Agnes is a contented five-year-old who lives in a land of grownups, a land with many buildings and just as many interesting … Continue reading #WorldKidLit Wednesday: Agnes’s Place

#WorldKidLit Wednesday: Ida and the Whale

“Would you like to come with me on a journey beyond the stars?” So asks a friendly flying whale that young Ida meets when she’s half asleep. Who could resist such an enticing invitation? Not I. Nor Ida. And so we enter a dreamy fantasy world as we join Ida and the whale on their … Continue reading #WorldKidLit Wednesday: Ida and the Whale

#WorldKidLitWednesday: Brown

In Brown, a spare, quirky, satisfying book for middle grade readers, we meet Rusty, aka superhero Brown, at a rocky time in his life. His grandfather dies soon after his family moves to be nearby. A group of three bullies—including the minister’s son—destroy the fort that Rusty and his friend Jack have been building.  Rusty … Continue reading #WorldKidLitWednesday: Brown

#WorldKidLit Wednesday: Mister Orange

Who is Mister Orange? And why is this quiet, moving book named after him? Written by award-winning Dutch author and editor, Truus Matti, and beautifully translated by another award-winner, Laura Watkinson, Mister Orange won the Netherlands' 2012 Silver Slate Pencil Award and the American Library Associations's 2014 Mildred L. Batchelder Award. The story begins in … Continue reading #WorldKidLit Wednesday: Mister Orange