Posted on November 14th, 2018 by pajamapress
The International Educator
“…Moon at Nine is a tense and riveting YA novel. Fifteen-year-old Farrin has grown up with secrets: ten years after the overthrow of the Shah, her aristocratic mother is still working against Iran’s conservative revolutionary government. But when Farrin befriends Sadira, the new student at her school, her own secret is even more dangerous. Because the girls discover their relationship is more than just a friendship—and in Iran, being gay is punishable by death.”
Click here for the full review
Posted on March 6th, 2017 by pajamapress
“Rating: 1-5 (5 is an excellent or a Starred review) 5…
What did you like about the book? Farrin goes to a school for gifted girls, and when Sadira begins attending her school, the two fall in love. Amid all of the political upheaval in her country, Farrin is caught kissing Sadira and the two are punished. Farrin thinks she can’t survive without seeing Sadira, but can she survive if they stay together? Heart-stirring, believable, and ultimately heartbreaking, this is a must-read.
Anything you didn’t like about it? No
To whom would you recommend this book? Middle and high school teens…
Should we (librarians/readers) put this on the top of our “to read” piles? Yes”
—Kasia Piasecka, Falmouth Public Library
Click here to read the full review
Posted on January 27th, 2017 by pajamapress
On Multicultural Children’s Book Day we are pleased to celebrate books written by or in collaboration with people of various cultures. Knowing this collection should be larger, we encourage submissions from authors and illustrators from every background.
This is the fourth year running for Multicultural Children’s Book Day mission is to raise awareness for the children’s books that celebrate diversity, and to get more of these books into classrooms and libraries. You can find out more about this very important initiative here.
Here are some of our titles that we recommend to those looking to introduce new, diverse books to their bookshelves.
Peach Girl by Raymond Nakamura, illustrated by Rebecca Bender
Adrift at Sea by Marsha Forchuk Skrypuch and Tuan Ho, illustrated by Brian Deines
Moon at Nine by Deborah Ellis
Next Round: A Young Athlete’s Journey to Gold by John Spray
Last Airlift: A Vietnamese Orphan’s Rescue from War by Marsha Forchuk Skrypuch
One Step at a Time: A Vietnamese Child Finds Her Way by Marsha Forchuk Skrypuch
Posted on January 9th, 2017 by pajamapress
“Based on interviews with a young woman who had to flee Iran due to her sexual orientation, Moon at Nine is a unique story on many levels…Any reader who wants to understand Iranian history through the experiences of young people who themselves are changing will find Moon at Nine a riveting, different read that rests firmly on compelling characters facing an array of changes. Highly recommended for young adult readers in grade 9 and up.”
Click here to read the full review
Posted on October 5th, 2015 by pajamapress
“…I really loved the relationship between Farrin and Sadira, and I applaud Ellis for writing this book. It’s heartbreaking to think of the hardships people have gone through, and continue to go through, to be with a person they care about and love. I can happily say that this book is in both the Early Years and Middle Years school libraries in which I work, and I hope that many of our students will read it.”
Click here to read the full review.
Posted on July 15th, 2015 by pajamapress
“In this riveting love story based on true events, Deborah Ellis transports readers to Iran in 1988 just nine years after the Islamic Revolution. There readers meet fifteen-year-old Farrin, born into a wealthy aristocratic family. Farrin’s life is filled with great privilege except at her private high school for gifted girls where Pargol, a student monitor, often bullies her. Farrin gains a friend when Sadira arrives at the school. Eventually their relationship grows into something more than friendship, and the girls plan to run away together after Sadira’s parents arrange a marriage for her. Both girls are arrested, and readers can see how the perspective of the book’s characters change with shifts in power and position. In the afterward (sic.), the author explains how homosexuality is still illegal in more than 70 countries and punishable by death in six. Readers will find this powerful book both compelling and chilling.”
—Terrell A. Young, Brigham Young University, Provo, UT
The Dragon Lode is a juried journal published by the International Reading Association Children’s Literature and Reading Special Interest Group. Click here to learn more.
Posted on June 18th, 2015 by pajamapress
“Like a conscientious hiker, Deborah Ellis treads skilfully through the historical terrain of her thirtieth work, Moon at Nine. The revolutionary tumult of 1980s post-shah Iran might not seem like fertile territory for a YA novel with queer and feminist themes, yet Ellis’s superbly crafted storytelling weaves together the ensuing political chaos with a teenage girl’s struggle to find her place within her restrictive society in a way that reveals the YA genre as capable of more than it is usually given credit for. That Ellis is so comfortable spinning so many plates at once is a testament to her authorial skill; that not one of these plates falls is what makes Moon at Nine such a cracking piece of literature.
…Moon at Nine is the romantic adventure tale longed for by queer teenagers prowling the school library for stories that more closely resemble their own. The novel’s foreign and historical setting are brought to life by Ellis’s energizing prose, and each character is fully realized as a layered human being attempting to negotiate and survive an oppressive political regime. While Deborah Ellis succeeds resoundingly in her pioneering position, Moon at Nine reveals that LGBT themes so dexterously written into YA literature are sadly all too rare.”
—Matthew R. Loney
Click here to read the full review.
Posted on March 27th, 2015 by pajamapress
Five Pajama Press titles have been selected for the Bank Street College of Education’s The Best Children’s Books of the Year, 2015 Edition:
Nat the Cat Can Sleep Like That
Written by Victoria Allenby, illustrated by Tara Anderson
Under Five, Animals (Fiction)
Skydiver: Saving the Fastest Bird in the World
Written and illustrated by Celia Godkin
Ages 9–12, Ecology
Cat Champions: Caring for our Feline Friends
Written by Rob Laidlaw
Ages 9–12, Science
Moon at Nine
Written by Deborah Ellis
Ages 12–14, Today
Written by Karen Bass
Ages 14+, Historical Fiction
Click here to view the full lists.
Posted on March 8th, 2015 by pajamapress
Pajama Press congratulates Deborah Ellis, whose 2014 novel Moon at Nine has been shortlisted for the 2015 Canadian Library Association Young Adult Book Award.
Based closely on real events, Moon at Nine recounts the story of two teenaged girls who fell in love in 1980s Tehran. The moving novel has already been selected for the Amelia Bloomer Project List and as a Quill & Quire book of the year, an Ontario Library Association Best Bet, and a Best Books for Kids & Teens starred selection.
The CLA Young Adult Book Award is sponsored by TD Bank Group and Library Services Centre each year for a work of fiction that appeals to young adults between the ages of 13 and 18. The winner and honour books will be announced during the week of April 20th. The award will be presented during the CLA National Conference and Trade Show in Ottawa on June 4th.
Visit the Moon at Nine page to download a classroom discussion guide, find resources about Deborah Ellis, watch the official book trailer, or read full reviews.
Posted on February 17th, 2015 by pajamapress
Pajama Press is proud to announce that Moon at Nine by Deborah Ellis has been selected as one of the titles to be honoured on the Amelia Bloomer Young Adult Fiction list in 2015.
Part of the American Library Association Social Responsibilities Round Table’s Feminist Task Force, the Amelia Bloomer Project recommends a list of the best feminist books for young readers each year. You can view the full 2015 list here.
Moon at Nine is the powerful story of two young teenaged girls in 1980s Iran whose friendship deepens into romance. In post-revolutionary Iran, homosexuality is punishable by death—but Farrin and Sadira refuse to deny their love. Author Deborah Ellis says, “Farin and Sadira’s story, based on true events, shows the power of love, of hope, and of the determination of women around the world to make things better.”
Moon at Nine has also been honoured recently as a Quill & Quire Book of the Year and an Ontario Library Association Best Bet. School Library Journal says, “Sparse and eloquently-written, this short historical novel is both beautiful and heartbreaking.” Publishers Weekly adds, “A firm grounding in Iranian history, along with the insight and empathy Ellis brings to the pain of those whose love is decreed to be immoral and unnatural, make this a smart, heartbreaking [novel.]”
Follow the links to access full reviews, a book trailer, interviews with Deborah Ellis, and a free downloadable classroom teaching guide.