The Heart’s Language

How do you listen with your heart? For one small boy, the heart’s language is the only one he knows. With his heart he can speak to animals, trees, and creatures of the sea. But he cannot be understood by the people around him, even those who love him most — his mother and father. One day, when he is feeling sad and alone, he is visited by a magical blue bird. With the bird’s encouragement, the boy finds a way to make himself heard. And when his parents try to speak the boy’s language, they are finally able to express their love, and truly communicate with the shared language of the heart. This lyrical story of love and understanding will speak to anyone whose life has been touched by an exceptional child.

Families Around the World

A successor to the popular Children Around the World written and illustrated by Donata Montanari, this book allows young readers to visit with fourteen children, each from a different country, to learn about their families. Based on real children, each one’s story fills a two-page spread and is told in the first person, beginning with a greeting in the child’s native language.

So Much for Democracy

Twelve-year-old Astrid has come to Ghana with her family in 1979 so that her father can help oversee Ghana’s first democratic election. Astrid and her brother, Gordo, were told it would be a great family adventure, but they soon find out that everything about Ghana is difficult—the heat, the food, the threat of disease, the soldiers on the roads, the schools. Gordo fits in more easily than Astrid, who is often left to look after her baby sister, Piper, as their mother begins to fall apart under the strain of living in Ghana. When the government is overthrown, Gordo comes down with malaria and a soldier threatens her family.

Always Jack

“Jack’s life is pretty good — he has great friends, everyone loves his funny jokes and he’s an awesome inventor. But things are getting complicated. Nanna’s older and wobblier, and why does his face turn red when he sees his best friend, Anna? And to top it off, Mum and Rob’s wedding seems to be taking over the world. Something really scary has also happened to his mum and it’s going to take all of Jack’s courage to deal with it.”