The Rooster Who Would Not Be Quiet!

So the villagers elect the bossy Don Pepe as their mayor. Before long, singing of any kind is outlawed. Even the teakettle is afraid to whistle! But there is one noisy rooster who doesn’t give two mangos about this mayor’s silly rules. Instead, he does what roosters were born to do.

The Other Side Of the Wall

Simon Schwartz was born in 1982 in East Germany, at a time when the repressive Socialist Unity Party of Germany controlled the area. Shortly before Simon’s birth, his parents decided to leave their home in search of greater freedoms on the other side of the Berlin Wall. But East German authorities did not allow the Schwartzes to leave for almost three years. In the meantime, Simon’s parents struggled with the costs of their decision: the loss of work, the attention of the East German secret police and the fragmentation of their family.

Maggot Moon

Fifteen-year-old, Standish Treadwell risks all to expose the truth about a heralded moon landing. On the other side of the wall there is a dark secret. And the devil. And the Moon Man. And the Motherland doesn’t want anyone to know. But Standish Treadwell–who has different-colored eyes, who can’t read, can’t write, Standish Treadwell isn’t bright–sees things differently than the rest of the “train-track thinkers.” So when Standish and his only friend and neighbor, Hector, make their way to the other side of the wall, they see what the Motherland has been hiding.

Equal Rights Is Our Minimum Demand

On June 12, 2005, hundreds of women gathered outside Tehran University in Tehran, Iran. These women were protesting an issue that Iranian women have battled for more than one hundred years: gender inequality. Living in a conservative Muslim culture, Iranian women are subjected to discriminatory laws that serve the male-dominated society. In the 1900s, Iranian women began protesting unjust laws and fighting for equality. For a time, under monarchs wishing to modernize, Iran became more lenient. Women began dressing as they wished, mixing socially with men, and working outside their homes. But after the Islamic Revolution of 1979, harsh punishments for moral offenses again became law. Iranian women continue to struggle against an oppressive regime, but they refuse to stop protesting. Iranian women have been punished and discriminated against by their patriarchal government, but yet they maintain their pursuit of equal rights.

Puppet

A heartbreaking episode in history, explained through the story of a young servant girl in the late 1800s. The year is 1882. A young servant girl named Esther disappears from a small Hungarian village. Several Jewish men from the village of Tisza Eszvar face the ‘blood libel’ — the centuries-old calumny that Jews murder Christian children for their blood. A fourteen-year-old Jewish boy named Morris Scharf becomes the star witness of corrupt authorities who coerce him into testifying against his fellow Jews, including his own father, at the trial.

This powerful fictionalized account of one of the last blood libel trial in Europe is told through the eyes of Julie, a friend of the murdered Esther, and a servant at the jail where Morris is imprisoned. Julie is no stranger to suffering herself. An abused child, when her mother dies her alcoholic father separates her from her beloved baby sister. Julie and Morris, bound by the tragedy of the times, become unlikely allies. The novel is based upon a real court case that took place in Hungary in 1883. In Hungary today, the name Morris Scharf has become synonymous with “traitor.”

The Other Half of Life

A heartbreaking novel based on the true story of a World War II voyage.In May of 1939, the SS St. Francis sets sail from Germany, carrying German Jews and other refugees away from Hitler’s regime. The passengers believe they are bound for freedom in Cuba and eventually the United States, but not all of them are celebrating. Fifteen-year-old Thomas is anxious about his parents and didn’t want to leave Germany: his father, a Jew, has been imprisoned and his mother, a Christian, is left behind, alone. Fourteen-year old Priska has her family with her, and she’s determined to enjoy the voyage, looking forward to their new lives. Based on the true story of the MS St. Louis, this historical young adult novel imagines two travelers and the lives they may have lived until events, and immigration laws, conspired to change their fates.

The Lost Boys of Sudan

This book presents accounts of narrow escapes executed by oppressed individuals and groups while illuminating social issues and the historical background that led to wars in Sudan and the orphaned refugees known as the ‘Lost Boys’.

The Khmer Rouge

This book presents accounts of narrow escapes executed by oppressed individuals and groups while illuminating social issues and the historical background that led to the atrocities committed in Cambodia’s “killing fields” by the Khmer Rouge.

Between Shades of Gray

In 1941, fifteen-year-old Lina, her mother, and brother are pulled from their Lithuanian home by Soviet guards and sent to Siberia. Her father is sentenced to death in a prison camp while she fights for her life, vowing to honor her family in a labor camp.

See the review at WOW Review, Volume 4, Issue 2