White Ravens: jordan

4 books      

Special Mention - Norway (Norwegian) - 1998 - 198
Sortland, Bjørn (text)
Hiorthøy, Kim (illus.)
Den solbrente mammaen som blei bytta mot ti kamelar
(The sun-burned mother who was traded for ten camels)
Oslo: Aschehoug, 1997. 83 p.
ISBN 82-03-24208-1
Jordan - Vacation - Culture clash
An unplanned vacation in Aqaba, in Jordan, leads to a surprising cultural experience for a Norwegian family when the mother, in good fun, accepts the bride price being offered by a native Jordanian. This is a burlesque novel with a touch of exotic by the now internationally renown author Sortland. It won the publisher's prize as best children's book in 1997. Just as unusual as the story are the binding and illustrations in a strictly linear style, which are a welcome change from the average naturalism of many children's book illustrations. (8+) ☆

Jordan (Arabic) - 2000 - 247
Naǧǧār, Taġrīd 'Ārif an (text)
'Ābd-as-sāhib, Lamyā' (illus.)
al-ǵ ūl
(The man-eater)
'Ammān: as-Salwā, 1998. 23 p.
(Ahsan Sadīq)
(In Arabic letters)
Stranger - Stereotypes - Prejudice - Fear - Xenophobia
Hasan encounters a monster called »Gul« (»maneater «) that is feared by the whole village. When Hasan tries to speak with him, he learns that Gul himself is afraid of the boy and, in fact, of all people who have two eyes instead of one and who - worst of all - like to eat »Guls.« Thus he discovers that people and this strange creature share the same fears and prejudices although they only know each other by hearsay. In the end the »monster« becomes Hasan's friend and helps the village inhabitants with their work.This argument against fear of the unknown and maintaining prejudices about being different is accompanied by easily understandable color illustrations. (5+) ☆

Greece (Greek) - 2005 - 240
Patroklu, Lila (text)
Papatsaruchas, Basilēs (illus.)
Hē Chrysula
(<Proper name>)
Athēna : Kastōr, 2004. 29 p.
ISBN 960-7906-56-X
Journey – Fantasy – Effort
Chrysula, a camel with a heart of gold, lives in Jordan but dreams of Sweden. She is so tired of the heat in her home country that every night she imagines how she would move to a country full of snow and ice. She finally decides to stop dreaming and do something instead; thus, she goes off on a long journey. After a route of hardship and suffering through Russia, she passes the snow-white fields of Finland and eventually arrives in Sweden. Her dream has finally come true! After all, perseverance and willpower are the best way to complete a difficult task. This book received an award for its unique illustrations that liberate children’s imagination and make them travel to their dream land with Chrysula as their companion. (5+)

Special Mention - Spain (Catalan) - 1994 - 166
Jordana, C. A. (text)
Jover, Llui'sa (illus.)
Antenaforta i Caragran
(Strong Antenna and a Large Face)
[Barcelona]: Abadia de Montserrat, 1992. 24 p.
(La Finestra 19)
ISBN 84-7826-297-0
Fable - Ant - Cricket - Agreement
The crickets sing untiringly in order lo ease the life of the ants who scurry about their work in long columns. Over and over again the crickets assure each other how glad the ants must be to have this musical accompaniment. They only realize that their chirping gets on the ants' nerves when the ants are relaxing in their comfortable winter apartments and the crickets beg them for food - only to be given the cold brush off. But next summer when the ants can barely drag themselves along in the August sun, the crickets having decided to strike, the ants then send their own delegation. Winter provisions are assured, if only they will sing again for the weary workers. The illustrations by Jover give this old and often retold fable additional charm. While entire convoys of racy ants line the borders in various formations, small, full-sized drawings on the opposite page portray the place, action and mood of the events with all its delightful minute details. (6+)