Daniel and Ismail, one Jewish and the other Palestinian, don’t know each other yet, but they have more in common than they know. They live in the same city and have the same birthday, and this year they get the same presents: a traditional scarf—for Daniel a tallit and for Ismail a keffiyeh and a soccer ball. Taking their gifts out for a spin, they meet by chance on a soccer field, and they soon begin to play together and show off the tricks they can do. They get so absorbed in the fun that they lose track of time and mix up their gifts: Daniel picks up Ismail’s keffiyeh and Ismail takes Daniel’s tallit. When they get home and discover their mistake, their parents are shocked and angry, asking the boys if they realize who wears those things. That night, Daniel and Ismail have nightmares about what they have seen on the news and heard from adults about the other group. But the next day, they find each other in the park and get back to what really matters: having fun and playing the game they both love.
Balcony on the Moon follows Ibtisam Barakat through her childhood and adolescence in Palestine from 1972-1981 and chronicles her desire to be a writer.
Baddawi is the story of a young boy named Ahmad struggling to find his place in the world. It explores the childhood of the author’s father from a determinedly boy’s-eye view. Ahmed was raised in the refugee camp of Baddawi in northern Lebanon, one of many thousands of children born to Palestinians who fled (or were expelled from) their homeland during the 1948 war that established the state of Israel. Ahmad’s dogged pursuit of education and opportunity echoes the journey of the Palestinian people, as they make the best of their existing circumstances while remaining determined to one day return to their homeland.
When normal American middle-school student Clare dies and comes back as a cat in the middle of conflict between Israelis and Palestinians, she wonders if she should even try to do what she can to help since, after all, she is just a cat. A cat sneaks into a small Palestinian house on the West Bank that has been commandeered by two Israeli soldiers. The house seems empty, until the cat realizes that a little boy is hiding beneath the floorboards.
Thirteen-year-old Rabia, along with her mother and younger brother, flees Afghanistan and the brutal Taliban for Pakistan. Some months later, they take part in a program that is relocating refugee widows and orphans to America. However, their flight falls on the fateful morning of 9/11. After the terrorist attack on the World Trade Center in New York City, their plane is diverted to Gander, Newfoundland. Also on the plane is a boy named Colin, who struggles with his prejudices against Rabia and her family after they are all stuck in Gander. The people in the small community open their hearts and their homes to the stranded passengers, and their kindness might be the bridge to bring Rabia and Colin’s families together.
Living in a Palestinian community in Gaza City during 1988-89–the year of the Infitada–an 11-year-old boy must come to terms with the violence and terrorism that surrounds his life as it affects her family and her surrounding.
Photo-essay focusing on two Israeli children, one Jewish and one Palestinian, who, in spite of their differences and the longstanding conflicts in the region, learn to play, work, and share ideas together at Summer Peace Camp, a day camp located in Israel.
Deborah Ellis’s enormously popular Breadwinner trilogy recounted the experiences of children living in Afghanistan; now Ellis turns her attention to the young people of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. After visiting the region to conduct interviews, she presents their stories here in their own words. Twelve-year-old Nora, eleven-year-old Mohammad, and many others speak directly about their lives – which prove to be both ordinary and extraordinary: They argue with their siblings. They hate spinach. They have wishes for the future. Yet they have also seen their homes destroyed and families killed, and live amidst constant upheaval and violence.This simple, telling book allows young readers everywhere to see that the children caught in this conflict are just like them – but living far more difficult and dangerous lives. Without taking sides, it presents an unblinking portrait of children victimized by the endless struggle around them.
A young girl describes a visit to see her grandmother in a Palestinian village on the West Bank.
A collection of eight stories, most previously published in other anthologies, about what it is like to grow up in the Middle East today.