Tag Archive | Turkey

Syria, Turkey, Iraq – refugees & Rolling Blackouts: graphic novel by Sarah Glidden (book review)

book cover of Rolling Blackouts, by Sarah Glidden. Published by Drawn & Quarterly | recommended on BooksYALove.com

War hurts the innocents the most,
Refugees fleeing or staying in bombed-out homes,
True now as it was in 2016…

So much of what the Seattle Globalist journalists and ’embedded artist’ Sarah Glidden experienced as they traveled in this strife-filled area of the Middle East is repeating in the news today.

Look for this nonfiction graphic novel at your local library or independent bookstore to see what happened and is still happening in Syria and neighboring Turkey and Iraq.

Where can you go when home is no longer safe… or even there?

Book info: Rolling Blackouts: Dispatches from Turkey, Syria, and Iraq / Sarah Glidden. Drawn & Quarterly, 2016. [author site] [publisher site] Review copy and cover image courtesy of the publisher.

My book talk: As part of an independent US journalism team examining conflict in the Middle East, cartoonist Sarah Glidden shows actions and interactions resulting when people in Turkey, Syria, and Iraq are asked “Who are you?” including the young veteran of the Iraq War accompanying them as a civilian.

The Seattle Globalist team has to leave for Turkey without visas for Syria (the Syrian ambassador in DC said yes to reporting on youth culture, but no to covering drought and refugees), but they’re looking forward to interviewing many different people on their two-month journey in 2010.

“Who are you?” they ask Iraqi refugees in Syria, their Kurdish driver in Iraq who won’t go to the Arab cities, an Iranian blogger, an American couple helping students get into college, a man deported from the US, their veteran friend who returned to Iraq for perspective.

This visual chronicle of their encounters and challenges brings glimpses of understanding about the continuing conflicts resulting from modern national boundaries intersecting with long-established cultural groups’ traditional territories.

Can she Escape From Aleppo in time? by N. H. Senzai (book review)

book cover of Escape from Aleppo, by N.H. Senzai. Published by Simon Schuster BFYR | recommended on BooksYALove.comThe bombing gets closer,
it’s time to leave, to run from danger!
She didn’t imagine that she’d have to flee to Turkey by herself…

Five years after the events in Nadia’s dangerous story, there are still daily bombings in Syrian cities and towns, as government and rebel forces continue to fight, killing so many families and children every day.

Read chapter one here (free, courtesy of the publisher) as Nadia’s family must flee their home, then go find this too-true fiction book at your local library or independent bookstore.

When your family’s safety is at stake, what are you prepared to do?

Book info: Escape From Aleppo / N. H. Senzai. Paula Wiseman Books/ Simon Schuster Books for Young Readers, 2018. [author site]  [publisher site]  Review copy and cover image courtesy of the publisher.

My book talk: Fleeing the bombs targeting her Aleppo neighborhood, 14-year-old Nadia is separated from her family and must use all her courage and cleverness to get to the Syria-Turkey border.

For three years of the Arab Spring, rebellions against corrupt governments have destroyed homes, businesses, and lives – in late 2013, it’s time to use their escape plan, but Nadia gets trapped on her route.

Nadia and her cat sneak through the shadows toward the planned rendezvous site, meeting a friendly grandfather with a donkey cart and two orphan boys – perhaps they will be safer together.

Rebels and soldiers fight street by street to control the city – how can Nadia and her companions get to the border?

Ammo Mazen knows just the right things to say to get both rebels and soldiers to let them pass – why does the old man collect books as they flee the city?

Based on true events, Nadia’s story of facing hunger and danger as Syrian government forces bomb rebels and their own citizens is repeating daily as the conflict continues today.

Violence and truth – books to read with your ears!

This week’s free audiobooks from SYNC bring us 9-year-olds faced with violence and hard choices, on opposite sides of the world.

Download either or both titles by Wednesday (5/16/18), then listen to your selection any time you like, using the free Overdrive app.

Bookmark the SYNC site now so you can download great audiobooks all summer long: http://www.audiobooksync.com/

CD cover of Johnny Get Your Gun, by John Ball | Read by Dion Graham Published by Brilliance Publishing | recommended on BooksYALove.com Johnny, Get Your Gun (free download 5/10-16/18)
by John Ball
Read by Dion Graham
Published by Brilliance Publishing

Fight the school bully? A 9 year old boy with a gun sparks violence in his impoverished LA neighborhood as racial tensions flare during the 1960s.


On Two Feet and Wings (free download 5/10-16/18)CD cover of On Two Feet and Wings, by Abbas Kazerooni | Read by Abbas Kazerooni Published by Brilliance Publishing | recommended on BooksYALove.com
by Abbas Kazerooni
Read by Abbas Kazerooni
Published by Brilliance Publishing

Abbas can become a soldier at age 9 in the Iran-Iraq War or escape to Turkey without money, family, or friends! Autobiography narrated by the author.

Other stories of young kids prevailing in terrible times?

Delilah Dirk and the Turkish Lieutenant, by Tony Cliff (book review) – swashbuckling adventuress of 1807!

book cover of Delilah Dirk and the Turkish Lieutenant by Tony Cliff published by First Second Like Indiana Jones in the 1800s!
Except she’s a noblewoman,
and an expert swordfighter,
and has a much more “flexible” sense of honor.

Should this be your first meeting with Delilah Dirk, prepare yourself for miraculous escapes, gymnastic evasive maneuvers, and well-timed explosions.

Alas, the Agha of Constantinople did not believe the intelligence reports about her skills… but circumlocutious Lt. Selim still has his head to prove it’s all true.

Just published yesterday as a full-color graphic novel, this swashbuckling webcomic translates so well to the printed page – I had as much fun re-reading it to write this recommendation as I did the first go-round! Read 12 pages of Delilah Dirk and the Turkish Lieutenant here and you’ll be hooked, too.

Here’s hoping that Delilah will have many more adventures for Canadian artist/author Tony Cliff to share with us (and that Lt. Selim can stand all the excitement).

Book info: Delilah Dirk and the Turkish Lieutenant / story and art by Tony Cliff. First Second Books, 2013. [Delilah site]  [author site]  [publisher site]  Review copy and cover image courtesy of the publisher.

My book talk: The Agha’s court of Constantinople in 1807 is hardly the place for a genteel young lady, but then again, adventuress Delilah Dirk is clever, skillful at fighting, and not at all genteel. Just ask Lt. Selim after she rescues him from execution and launches the tea-master into dangerous adventures with her.

Yes, Delilah is related to half the royal families in Europe. Yes, she has trained in weaponry and personal fighting skills her whole life. No, Selim is not fond of flying in the air (how does her ship do that?) or riding horseback for days on end (sorry, bad pun) or being nearly killed by Zakul’s minions repeatedly after Delilah steals her uncle’s treasure back from the pirate warlord.

Delilah insists that she can accomplish this task without Selim – he’s seen her swordwork and knows she’s right. But since Selim owes her his life, he tries to be helpful on her headstrong mission, while brewing the best teas on the entire Aegean Peninsula or Greece or wherever else they land.

Can they ‘liberate’ the treasure?
Will Selim survive the attempt?
What else does Delilah have up her sleeveless flight gown?

This uproarious, mile-a-minute graphic novel adventure features stellar use of color to invoke moods, fantastic drawing that brings emotions and motion to life, and sound effects (GRABB! DODGE’D!) that put an original spin on classic-comics traditions.   (One of 6,000 books recommended on www.abookandahug.com)