Pajama Press

Posts Tagged ‘war’

School Library Journal praises “nonstop action” in Graffiti Knight

Posted on May 1st, 2014 by pajamapress

GraffitiKnight_Med“It is 1947, and life is hard for 16-year-old Wilm and his family. The city of Leipzig, in southeast Germany, is controlled by the Soviets, who are brutal masters. The Germans are constantly hungry because the Soviets have significantly reduced their food rations. Even worse, the German police, Schupos, are puppets of the Soviets. Wilm and his friends like to skulk around and pretend to battle the enemy, but the war becomes real when he experiences just how powerless his community really is against them…The last quarter of the book is nonstop action…Wilm is a flawed but engaging protagonist, prone to headstrong actions, and he matures believably over the course of the story…Bass does a fine job of opening readers’ eyes to the harsh realities that so many German civilians faced after their country’s defeat, regardless of whether they had supported the Nazi regime.”

—Kim Dare, Fairfax County Public Schools, VA

Through the Looking Glass calls A Bear in War a “remarkable book”

Posted on November 6th, 2013 by pajamapress

A Bear In War case mech“Inspired by the true story of a teddy bear “that was sent to the front lines during World War I” this remarkable book will give children a sense of what it was like living on the home front. They will also find out what it was like to witness a war from the inside of a war medic’s pocket. Aileen’s father’s great-granddaughter, Stephanie Innes, wrote this story with author Harry Endulat, and it serves as a tribute to the young men who left their homes and families to serve in WWI. It also shows to great effect that people left at home had to have courage too. It was not easy living with worry and fear.”

— Marya Jansen-Gruber

Click here to read the full review.

Graffiti Knight Book Launch at Audrey’s Books

Posted on September 18th, 2013 by pajamapress

Last night Karen Bass launched her exciting YA novel Graffiti Knight at Audrey’s Books in   Edmonton, Alberta. The author read, signed, shared German baked goods, and even got tattooed for the occasion.

Karen Bass' henna tattoo reflecting Rebecca Buchanan's cover design

Graffiti Knight tells the story of Wilm, a sixteen-year-old boy seeking freedom and self-expression in post-World War II East Germany. Watch the book trailer or learn more about the book here.

This is Karen’s fourth YA novel, and she has a long history of celebrating them with Audrey’s Books. Tomorrow she will share the evening with another group of readers at Owl’s Nest Books in Calgary, Alberta.  You can read more about that event here.

Thank you to Karen Spafford-Fitz for sharing her pictures from the launch with us.

 

Karen signs books in character

Reading from Graffiti Knight

Publishers Weekly features books that help kids cope with war

Posted on September 16th, 2013 by pajamapress

Publishers Weekly recently published an article by Sally Lodge featuring books for children that “sort through the complexities of war.” One of these books is Last Airlift: A Vietnamese Orphan’s Rescue from War by Marsha Forchuk Skrypuch. Lodge writes, “This true story examines one girl’s life in a Saigon orphanage, her dramatic rescue and relocation to North America, and her adoption into a loving family.”

You can read the full article here.

 

School Library Journal features stories about children and war

Posted on September 16th, 2013 by pajamapress

In a recent article titled “Lost Childhood,” School Library Journal contributor Kathleen St. Isaacs highlighted books “about child refugee experiences and children who’ve found safe havens, but have haunting memories.” The selections are “emotionally rich narratives, often with a political subtext.” They include two books published by Pajama Press:

A Good Trade by Alma Fullerton, illustrated by Karen Patkau

“Gr. 1–3—On his daily trek to get water, a Ugandan boy sees a treasure in an aid truck—bright new sneakers—and finds just the right thing to exchange. Colorful illustrations full of details of daily life in a war-torn country will show well when the spare text is read aloud.”

 

 

One Step at a Time: A Vietnamese Child Finds Her Way

“Gr. 4–6—A seven-year-old Vietnamese refugee, newly arrived in Canada and unable to understand the language, faces a painful operation to straighten an ankle bent by polio. Tuyet’s poignant story was begun in Last Airlift: A Vietnamese Orphan’s Rescue from War (2012) but readers don’t have to have read that to enjoy this story of healing.”

Learn more about School Library Journal here.

Becoming a hero—CanLit for LittleCanadians reviews Graffiti Knight

Posted on July 30th, 2013 by pajamapress

Karen Bass‘ thorough research, as she describes in her Historical Notes at the back of the book, provides the authentic background for Graffiti Knight,challenging all that readers might think they know about Nazi Germany and its aftermath….By seeing Leipzig and other parts of Germany through the eyes of a young man of sixteen, who lives through World War II but experiences further injustice in its aftermath, when so many were celebrating victory, Karen Bass provides enlightenment via a new perspective.  Heroes are not just made in war.  Courage and compassion, the virtues of heroes anywhere and anytime, can make a knight out of anyone, even Wilm.”

—Helen Kubiw

Click here to read the full review.

SmartGIRL WORKs interview with Connie Brummel Crook

Posted on June 3rd, 2013 by pajamapress

The 200th anniversary of Laura Secord’s famous walk is June 22nd, 2013. With this date fast approaching, SmartGIRL WORKs interviewed author Connie Brummel Crook (Acts of Courage: Laura Secord and the War of 1812) to talk about this Canadian heroine and what it was like to writer her story.

Here is a sneak preview:

“When I was teaching, I noticed that there were many fine, contemporary books about a  number of teenagers’ present-day problems in our classrooms, but very little about our own Canadian heroes. Americans celebrate their heroes. Why shouldn’t we? So I have been writing historical fiction novels since I took early retirement from teaching. ”

Click here to read the full interview.

Library Matters reviews Last Airlift

Posted on May 21st, 2013 by pajamapress

Last Airlift won the non-fiction Red Cedar Club Award this year. All the students at Dickens who have read it enjoyed it immensely. I even have a couple creating a book trailer for it.

Because I hadn’t yet got around to reading it, last weekend I took it home. It is indeed a great and emotional read. (Imagine me sitting on the ferry trying to surreptitiously wipe tears from my eyes.) It deals gently with a difficult topic.”

Click here to read the full review.

A Bear in War Book Trailer

Posted on May 17th, 2013 by pajamapress

A Bear in War was released in the United States this month in time for Memorial Day. This true story of young Aileen Rogers’ teddy bear, who watched World War I from the pocket of her father’s uniform, captured hearts across Canada when it was first published in 2008, but the book’s original publisher closed its doors shortly after. Pajama Press brought the book back to print in 2012 and now it is available in the United States for the first time.

Click the link below to watch the official book trailer

A Bear in War Book Trailer

 

Last Airlift wins the Red Cedar Award

Posted on May 9th, 2013 by pajamapress

Congratulations to Marsha Forchuk Skrypuch, whose book Last Airlift: A Vietnamese Orphan’s Rescue from War has just won the Red Cedar Information Book Award.

More than 2,000 votes were cast by students across British Columbia for this year’s Red Cedar Awards. To learn more, visit the Red Cedar website.

Last Airlift has also been nominated for the OLA Forest of Reading Red Maple Nonfiction Award, to be announced on Wednesday, May 18 at the Festival of Trees in Toronto. Pajama Press is delighted and honoured by the reception this wonderful title has received.