Shelf Awareness for Readers for Friday, June 13, 2014


Other Press (NY): Nvk by Temple Drake

From My Shelf

Avid Reader Press: Three Women by Lisa Taddeo

Magination Press: Red Yellow Blue by Lysa Mullady, illustrated by Laurent Simon

The Blank Spaces on the Map

I always wanted to go on a book tour. During the seven years I was writing The Steady Running of the Hour, it was the one fantasy I'd let myself indulge in. I set off on the first flight, from Austin to New Orleans, holding a printed schedule with five weeks of readings and interviews and planes and hotels. In years of traveling, I had never been on such a planned trip. But I soon learned that like the blank spaces on an old map, it was the things unlisted on the schedule that would change me, the moments before or after that I would never forget.

There was the reading at Warwick's in San Diego, after which two young veterans came to the signing table to tell me about the letters they had written home, not from the Somme, as in my novel, but from Iraq. There was the weekend in Moscow, Idaho, where the staff of BookPeople of Moscow not only threw an unforgettable event, but housed and fed me, and took me on a hike above the green hills of the Palouse, the ridge crowned with wildflowers in spring bloom.

By the time I boarded my plane home, my suitcase was so crammed with mementos I could hardly shut it. They were the things I kept, and they have to stand in the many things I couldn't take home--long drives below snow-capped mountains, long nights with readers and writers and booksellers.

Before I went on tour I was convinced that books would always matter, because they had always mattered so much to me. But after the tour I knew it was true, for I had met dozens, even hundreds of people so touched by books that they give their lives to reading, writing or selling them, day after day. And out of everything I saw on my tour, it is them I will remember. -- Justin Go


Rp Minis: Cats on Catnip: A Grow-Your-Own Catnip Kit by Andrew Marttila


Book Candy

Father's Day Books; Books to Read to Children

Happy Father's Day! "Books have been written about fathers almost as long as the medium has existed," the Christian Science Monitor observed in recommending "15 books with memorable dads for Father's Day." In addition, USA Today highlighted a few titles in which "dads tell their stories in books" and Mental Floss noted "30 of the best parents in literature."

---

To balance out the jubilation, Julia Fierro, author of Cutting Teeth, highlighted a few "dysfunctional parents in fiction: the mothers and fathers we love to hate," for the Huffington Post.

---

William Sutcliffe, author of Circus of Thieves and the Raffle of Doom, picked his "top 10 books to read aloud to children."

---

Can you identify the book from its map? The Guardian's quiz offered the chance to "look at these maps and find out if you know which fictional worlds they chart."

---

Sometimes you can judge a book by its cover. ShortList magazine showcased its picks for the "40 coolest Sci-Fi book covers."


Ingram: Books Make Great Gifts - Take a Look!


Great Reads

It's Time for Soccer

Today I received yet another soccer book with the tagline "published in time for 2014 World Cup." This marketing tactic is similar to publishing a baseball book "just in time for the World Series," or a football book "just in time for the Super Bowl." You don't read a book on baseball during the World Series, and you don't read... oh wait, hardly anyone reads football books. And with the ability to watch World Cup matches all day, every day, from now through mid-July, fans aren't going to be reading a lot of books.

Still, as the matches start, we have some recommendations:

Fear and Loathing in La Liga (Nation Books, paperback). It's the perfect time to read this book about the rivalry between Real Madrid and FC Barcelona. Author Sid Lowe wrote a column for the Guardian suggesting that the El Clásico match in March might have been the game of the century. Not the best matchup between the two teams, but the best game.

Who Invented the Bicycle Kick? (Morrow, paperback) is a collection of q&as, like, well, "who invented the bicycle kick?" According to authors Paul Simpson and Uli Hesse, if you believe Eduardo Galeano, it was Ramon Unzaga. Goodness, why wouldn't you believe Galeano? You'll also find answers to rather odd questions like "do footballers have small feet?" and "who invented Total Football?"

The Soccer Diaries: An American's Thirty-Year Pursuit of the International Game (University of Nebraska Press) is Michael J. Agovino's story of falling in love with the sport in the U.S. in the '80s and his pursuit of the game both here and internationally. Arranged by specific matches, the book is a personal and entertaining travelogue. He went to so many great matches. So jealous.

When systems manager Alberto "Mono" Raguzzi takes a corporate buyout rather than accepting a promotion, he invests all the money through a washed-up soccer agent/apparent drug dealer in a promising player, Mario Juan Bautista Pittilanga. But Pittilanga is playing in a lower division team and is crap as a striker. Mono dies of cancer, and his three best friends are left with the problem of selling Pittilanga's contract to provide for Mono's daughter. Their strategies to inflate his value, their cons to unload the paper on him, create multiple twists in Eduardo Sacheri's novel Papers in the Wind (Other Press, translated from the Spanish by Mara Faye Lethem; paperback).

Red or Dead (Melville House), David Peace's novelization of manager Bill Shankly's 15-year career at Liverpool Football Club, is a wonderful book. Peace's writing has an echo built into it, a bit like call and response. The voice he's given Shankly is genuine and charming. It's a bit of a brick at 736 pages, but the writing is so engaging, so well done, that I almost forgot I was a reading it digitally. Almost. By the way, soccer books shouldn't be read digitally. --George Carroll


Justice Studios: Ultrasquad Novels by Julia Devillers and Ronald Raymond Wells Jr, illustrated by Rafael Rosado


Book Review

Fiction

The Committee on Town Happiness

by Alan Michael Parker


Poet Alan Michael Parker (Cry Uncle) has concocted a piece of surrealist Americana with a strongly postmodern sensibility. As hinted at by the title, The Committee on Town Happiness is an unusual narrative structured as a series of minutes from the meetings of a group that claims to be that curious municipal body. If the committee is to be believed, the town is an idyllic slice of small-town America--full of well-regulated food trucks, scenic hot-air-balloon rides and a tight-knit community of "Like-Minded Individuals."

It's clear from the opening lines that the town and the committee are not at all what they claim to be: "We have been thinking about the trees. The trees, we have decided, know what they're doing. We have decided (6-3, with one abstention) that there will be trees in the Afterlife." The committee is a micromanaging superego, prone to awarding arbitrary values to everything and anything. "Daily joy, 3. Lurking suspicions, 3. Moderation, 4. Finicky responses to stimuli, 4. Faith in the Committee on Town Happiness, n/a." It slowly comes to light that a group known as Danger for Fun, the town's uncontrollable id, is threatening to bring their carefully constructed system tumbling down. Or perhaps Danger for Fun is an invention of the Committee itself, an enemy constructed to distract attention from the terrifying, constantly encroaching Edge of Town and the void beyond.

The social commentary is occasionally heavy-handed, but the book is strongest when Parker lets his dry wit shine. The Committee on Town Happiness is crisply surreal, an odd little experiment that succeeds in spite of itself. --Emma Page, bookseller at Wellesley Books in Wellesley, Mass.

Discover: A series of surreal, darkly funny vignettes about a funhouse-mirror version of small-town America.

Dzanc Books, $14.95, paperback, 9781938103803

The Silent History

by Matthew Derby, Kevin Moffett, Eli Horowitz


Several decades in the future, a special project is formed with a singular goal: "to better understand the scope of the silent phenomenon." The subjects of the study are "silents"--multitudes of people who've been born unable to process language. By collecting accounts from parents, doctors, spiritual gurus and others who have come into contact with silents, the project is confronted with wildly contrasting theories as to what has caused the condition and how society should respond. These testimonials form The Silent History, a collaboration between Eli Horowitz, former publisher of McSweeney's, and novelists Matthew Derby and Kevin Moffett.

Originally serialized through an Apple iOS app, the novel was released in weekly segments between October 1, 2012, and April 19, 2013. A bold, experimental work of literary fiction, it has been reedited for the paperback edition.

Though each statement is no longer than a few pages, the speakers' personalities are remarkably dynamic--so much so that when they reappear much later in the novel, their voices are instantly recognizable. These testimonials are also disturbing, describing children met with harsh discrimination (called everything from "zombie" to "mutetard"), families haunted by confusion and guilt, and teachers straining to interpret their students' pain. More than anything, they are unnervingly philosophical. After years of researching the silents, the project's director wonders, "Are there wilder, more verdant fields out beyond the boundaries of language, where those of us who are silent now wander?" Such questions possess a sense of urgency that reaches beyond the confines of this intriguing fictional world. --Annie Atherton

Discover: A literary thriller about children who are born unable to comprehend language.

Farrar, Straus & Giroux, $16, paperback, 9780374534479

Mystery & Thriller

Elizabeth Is Missing

by Emma Healey


Emma Healey's dark, suspenseful debut pits an unusual sleuth against a mystery more than half a century old.

Octogenarian Maud Horsham's memories are slipping away. She copes with the help of part-time caregivers, handwritten notes and her daughter, Helen (who resents her brother, Peter, for not sharing the burden). Lately, Maud has grown convinced that her close friend Elizabeth has gone missing, but no one takes her concerns seriously. She tries to discover Elizabeth's whereabouts on her own, but as her grip on reality weakens, Maud's mind presents her instead with clues to the disappearance of her big sister, Sukey, shortly after World War II, when Maud was still a child. Even as Maud forgets the word "cup," her brain dredges up crystal-clear memories of beautiful Sukey, Sukey's handsome but jealous husband, Frank, and the mysterious "mad woman" who haunted their neighborhood.

Healey's bold decision to tell the story in Maud's voice pays off with a convincing and frightening descent into dementia. The suspense comes less from the mystery and more from the race against time as the reader wonders if Maud will find her answers before she is too far gone to remember the questions. Both an exploration of a cold case and a meditation on the inevitability of aging, Maud's last days of lucidity will challenge readers' assumptions about the elderly while also sending chills down the spine. Murder may be scary, but the thought of suffering Maud's fate is utterly terrifying. --Jaclyn Fulwood, blogger at Infinite Reads

Discover: An elderly woman's confused search for a missing friend provides clues to her sister's unexplained disappearance decades earlier.

Harper, $25.99, hardcover, 9780062309662

Science Fiction & Fantasy

The Girl with All the Gifts

by M.R. Carey


It's tempting to believe that the postapocalyptic zombie novel has been done to death, but M.R. Carey (The Naming of the Beasts, writing as Mike Carey) proves that the genre has life in it yet. Carey's The Girl with All the Gifts opens in "The After," which is what survivors call the new era after the outbreak of an unknown and uncontrollable virus that, yes, turns its victims into the walking dead. Here, 10-year-old Melanie wakes each morning in her cell, climbs into her wheelchair, and waits for soldiers to strap her in and wheel her off to school.

When a rival clan of survivors seeking food and resources attacks the cellblock in which Melanie lives, she finds herself launched out of her secluded life and into the dangerous world outside, full of abandoned towns, ransacked grocery stores and hundreds upon hundreds of the infected, known as "hungries." Luckily, she's not alone--she is with Miss Justineau, her favorite teacher, as well as two soldiers and a scientist. But as the small group ventures farther into the land formerly known as England, Melanie finds within herself a hunger she never knew existed, and her slow and steady approach toward self-awareness becomes as suspenseful as the small group's dangerous journey toward safer land.

The Girl with All the Gifts functions like a set of nesting dolls: Melanie's coming-of-age tale sits within her story of self-realization, resting inside a novel of scientific discovery, cradled by an impressive reimagining of a post-apocalyptic world. All together, those pieces combine into one zombie novel impressively steeped in human emotion. --Kerry McHugh, blogger at Entomology of a Bookworm

Discover: A fresh take on the classic post-apocalyptic zombie novel that asks big questions about our humanity.

Orbit, $25, hardcover, 9780316278157

California Bones

by Greg Van Eekhout


Set in a futuristic Los Angeles, capital of the Kingdom of Southern California where magic and the Hierarch rule, this urban fantasy from Greg Van Eekhout (Norse Code) combines sorcery, thievery, betrayal and cannibalism in a rapid-pace story of intrigue and deception.

"Our bodies are cauldrons," Sebastian says, "and we become the magic we consume." A powerful sorcerer, Sebastian urges his six-year-old son, Daniel, to drink a potent concoction of boiled kraken spine, setting Daniel on a path of osteomancy. Sebastian's brutal murder six years later sends Daniel into hiding, where he survives by his wits, reselling stolen bones and powders full of magic for his uncle. In his life of crime, Daniel forges deep bonds with other misfits of society.

Daniel and his team are called upon to break into the Hierarch's storehouse of magical objects, which is protected by supernatural spells and fiercely guarded by humans with special powers. They face golems, shape-shifters and humans trained as search dogs as they navigate the canals and underground terrain of a city where alchemy is in the air they breathe and the bones they consume. Fueled by the magical potions his father fed him, Daniel draws upon his sorcery to fight a classic and heroic battle against the Hierarch, the outcome of which changes everything.

Take the magic of Harry Potter's world and blend it with the X-Men and Ocean's Eleven, then add a dash of flesh-eating, power-hungry humans and you'll begin to understand the complex, delightfully creepy, crime-filled fantasy world Eekhout has cooked up. --Lee E. Cart, freelance writer and book reviewer

Discover: A dark, sorcery-filled tale of corruption, duplicity and revenge.

Tor, $24.99, hardcover, 9780765328557

Biography & Memoir

The Owl Who Liked Sitting on Caesar: Living with a Tawny Owl

by Martin Windrow


Military historian Martin Windrow (Our Friends Beneath the Sands) never considered himself an animal lover. But to aid his recuperation after a skydiving accident, Windrow allowed his brother to acquire for him an unusual pet. Wellington, a Little Owl ("this is a species, not a description"), was more than he had bargained for, and too much for his London flat; when Wellington escaped, Windrow found himself shamefacedly relieved. Convinced to try a different species, he made a second attempt with a Tawny Owl hatchling he named Mumble, and they became fast friends.

The Owl Who Liked Sitting on Caesar is in large part a loving memoir of a dearly departed and singular companion. Windrow also shares his research into the biology, history, folklore and usual habits of the Tawny Owl and its strigine relations. He repeatedly stresses the amateur nature of these studies, but nonetheless imparts wisdom and praise for this corner of the animal kingdom, as well as for his friend of 15 years.

Mumble is an endearing juvenile, a feisty adolescent, and initially tolerant of visitors, but eventually too prickly to admit her master's friends. Windrow moves out of London and into the country to allow her greater freedom, and watches her personality and customs change as she ages, molts and nests. It has taken nearly 20 years after Mumble's demise for him to reopen the tender subject of her life, drawing on diary entries that recorded her vocalizations, eating habits, grooming and quirks. Fans of loving memoirs about pets, accessible science writing and dry humor will be charmed by Windrow's love letter to Mumble. --Julia Jenkins, librarian and blogger at pagesofjulia

Discover: A fondly affectionate portrait of a Tawny Owl, tempered by wry wit and British reserve.

Farrar, Straus & Giroux, $26, hardcover, 9780374228460

So Long, Marianne: A Love Story

by Kari Hesthamar, trans. by Helle V. Goldman


Petrarch had Laura, Poe had Annabel Lee, and Leonard Cohen had Marianne Ihlen, the central subject of Kari Hesthamar's So Long, Marianne. While many muses' identities are confined to their role in the art they sparked, Hesthamar's thoughtful and empathetic biography centers on the woman herself, elevating her from an inspiration to a full-fledged human, interesting for her own life, on her own merits.

Hesthamar, who first delved into this story for Norwegian radio, wisely treats Marianne as her primary focus. It would have been easy to analyze her strictly through the lens of her relationships. Originally, Marianne moved to the Greek isle of Hydra with her husband, Axel Jensen, an accomplished novelist who left her for another woman shortly after the birth of their son. She met Cohen when she was still married, and slowly spun friendship into love. Cohen said, "There wasn't a man who wasn't interested in Marianne, who wasn't interested in approaching that beauty and that generosity."

But Hesthamer also paints Marianne Ihlen--through her early 20s as a new, young mother to the end of her time on Hydra, which she left in her mid-30s--as a blonde, tan beauty with a proclivity for new age psychology and a habit of pulling up her roots. We follow her from Norway to Greece, from Greece to Montreal, and while Hesthamar makes no effort to hide her subject's faults, Marianne is ultimately a likable and beautifully imperfect protagonist. It's the mark of a wonderful biography that we, too, fall in love. --Linnie Greene, freelance writer and bookseller at Flyleaf Books

Discover: A thoughtful glimpse at the muse behind Leonard Cohen's classic "So Long Marianne."

ECW Press, $24.95, hardcover, 9781770411289

Margarita Wednesdays: Making a New Life by the Mexican Sea

by Deborah Rodriguez


Rumors circulated that Deborah Rodriguez (Kabul Beauty School) was a Christian running a brothel instead of a hair-styling school in Afghanistan. Then her Afghan husband talked of an aborted bombing on the school and her younger son was in danger of being kidnapped, so Rodriguez took her youngest and fled Kabul, abandoning nearly everything (including her marriage). Depressed and afraid, she lived in the mountains of California for two years, battling PTSD and in an on-again, off-again romantic relationship. After years of living on high alert, suddenly Rodriguez "was an emotional basket case... even getting dressed in the morning would suddenly make me burst into tears."

A chance cruise to Mexico, with a stop in the port city of Mazatlán, opened doors. She bought a house and gradually made a circle of friends in the city's large expat community. As the beauty and serenity of Mexican culture slowly seeped into Rodriguez's bones, she searched for a way to make a living outside of the cosmetology world, which she wanted to avoid.

With honesty and pluck, Rodriguez entwines the day-to-day details of being an American in Mexico with humorous and life-altering shopping adventures to Pátzcuaro and Guadalajara and the unexpected arrival of her older son, events that made her rethink her position. Rodriguez's story vibrates with the determination of a woman who wants to make a difference in the lives of others in the only way she knows: teach them to do hair. --Lee E. Cart, freelance writer and book reviewer

Discover: Another globe-trotting chapter in the life of Deborah Rodriguez, author of the bestselling memoir Kabul Beauty School.

Gallery Books, $26, hardcover, 9781476710662

The Late Starters Orchestra

by Ari L Goldman


It's doubtful former New York Times reporter-turned-Columbia University journalism professor Ari Goldman (The Search for God at Harvard) set out to produce a self-help manual when he began this engaging account of his return to playing the cello after a hiatus of more than two decades. Still, it will be a surprise if his story doesn't inspire at least a few readers to find a long-abandoned musical instrument and prove that their investment--whether of money or time--will bear fruit.

For seven years ending in the early 1980s, Goldman studied cello under Heinrich Joachim, who became something of a surrogate father. In 2009, inspired by his youngest son Judah's gift for the instrument, Goldman joined the titular orchestra, an organization "founded on the premise that serious music isn't only for the accomplished musician." Joachim's influence pervades his former student's dogged struggle to attain a semblance of proficiency. Goldman's goal is to perform a recital on his 60th birthday, an event he recounts with the same modesty that marks the rest of this story. He introduces a bevy of intriguing characters he meets in the LSO, while sharing tidbits on the history of the instrument, playing technique and the pure joy of bringing music to life.

Goldman cites studies that extol the myriad benefits felt by older people who engage in musical training. As his contemporaries move into retirement, he writes, "their quest for learning, meaning, growth and attention is unabated." This warmhearted book reaffirms the truth that their satisfaction will lie in making that journey, much more so than in reaching a destination. --Harvey Freedenberg, attorney and freelance reviewer

Discover: A journalist's affecting memoir of his return to music in middle age.

Algonquin, $23.95, hardcover, 9781565129924

Social Science

The Grapes of Math: How Life Reflects Numbers and Numbers Reflect Life

by Alex Bellos


"Mathematics is a joke," Alex Bellos declares in his introduction to The Grapes of Math. "I'm not being funny. The mental process is the same." Jokes and equations each contain characters, a story and a punch line (or proof, in mathematics). Bellos (Here's Looking at Euclid) believes the "aha" moments in math are as entertaining as a good joke and he sets out to prove it, taking readers on a whirlwind tour of his favorite mathematical concepts. Numerical laws, the geometry of circles and triangles, the vagaries of pi and even imaginary numbers all warrant a mention.

Bellos's voice is warm and witty, calming the fears of the math-averse and providing a concise primer on long-forgotten principles of algebra and geometry. Each chapter includes real-life applications of a featured mathematical idea, from mountain climbing and land surveying to a complicated computer game created by genius nerds at MIT. Bellos discusses parabolas in relation to telescopes and planetary orbits, centripetal force in railroad construction and the infinitely fascinating fractal patterns created by imaginary numbers.

Some of Bellos's concepts are pure abstract thought (and the explanations are a bit technical for a lay audience), but many of his examples are drawn straight from engineering and architecture. Diagrams in each chapter provide helpful visual aids, and a robust section of appendices offers further proofs where needed.

For amateur mathematicians--or parents struggling to help with algebra homework--The Grapes of Math provides an entertaining refresher course on math in real life. --Katie Noah Gibson, blogger at Cakes, Tea and Dreams

Discover: An entertaining tour of basic mathematical concepts and their varied real-world applications.

Simon & Schuster, $25.99, hardcover, 9781451640090

Children's & Young Adult

The Glass Sentence

by S.E. Grove


Debut author S.E. Grove introduces a plucky 13-year-old heroine named Sophia Tims in the first of a planned trilogy. The Glass Sentence will attract Harry Potter fans and others who enjoy plunging into a world with alternate universes.

It is the summer of 1891 in Boston, and Sophia has been in the care of her uncle, Shadrack Ellis, ever since her explorer parents disappeared 10 years ago. Readers hit the ground running, as Sophia witnesses Shadrack, the world's finest cartologist, making a case to Parliament against closing the borders of their native New Occident. Ever since the Great Disruption, time has settled differently in different parts of the world. Shadrack is one of the few who advocate permeable borders, and he can read maps from many eras. He fails to sway Parliament, and a brawl breaks out. Big events happen in rapid succession. When Sophia gets home, Shadrack takes her into a secret map room and teaches her to unlock maps of metal, cloth, clay and glass. Each releases the memories of those who helped construct it, and Sophia experiences them as if they were her own. She also learns of the carta mayor, a memory map of the entire world that some believe exists, and others think is myth. But then Shadrack is kidnapped--his captor believes in the carta mayor and thinks Shadrack knows its whereabouts.

Grove explores haunting questions about the nature of time and memory. This would make an ideal family read-aloud; as an independent read, it's best undertaken in one sitting. Riveting. --Jennifer M. Brown, children's editor, Shelf Awareness

Discover: A mind-blowing debut from S.E. Grove that takes readers deep into a time-shifting world that requires multiple maps and a moral compass.

Viking, $17.99, hardcover, 512p., ages 10-up, 9780670785025

Say What You Will

by Cammie McGovern


Cammie McGovern's (The Art of Seeing) first young adult novel overturns stereotypes and shines a spotlight on characters who soar above their crippling limitations.

The summer before senior year Amy e-mails Matthew: "Tell me the truth. That's all." Amy has cerebral palsy and she's convinced her mother to swap out her adult aides for peer helpers so she can learn how to relate to people her own age as she prepares for college. Amy requests that Matthew apply because he doesn't shy away from the reality of her disabilities. But the honesty she draws out of him makes him nervous, especially when it comes to her endearing persistence about why he doesn't like sleepovers. Since the ninth grade, Matthew has suffered from obsessive-compulsive disorder, and the voice in his head commands him never to reveal the truth about his routines. But Amy challenges him with exercises to help him overcome his mounting panic attacks and begin the healing process. Still, for all of their honesty, it's the withheld truths that threaten to pull them apart.

McGovern's nuanced writing brings these well-rounded and unforgettable characters to life. She does not define them by their handicaps or limitations, but rather she illuminates the ways in which they help each other and grow through that process. Fans of Rainbow Rowell's Eleanor and Park and Stoner & Spaz by Ron Koertge may well lose themselves in this diverse and rewarding romance. Say What You Will is touching, honest and compulsively readable. --Adam Silvera, children's bookseller

Discover: A cleverly written novel about the relationship between a girl with cerebral palsy and a boy afflicted with OCD.

HarperTeen, $17.99, hardcover, 352p., ages 14-up, 9780062271105

Two Parrots

by Rashin


Making her U.S. debut, Iranian-born illustrator Rashin Kheiriyeh takes a tale by Rumi about freedom and makes it entirely her own.

The glorious patterns on the clothes of Rashin's characters, the furniture, floors, walls and vessels immediately transplant readers to an exotic land. "Once upon a time, in Persia, there was a merchant who traveled the world for his business," the book begins. The merchant, with a kind face, wears a stately hat, a vest in ruby red and a jet-black coat with a pattern in gold that resembles bird tracks. A green parrot, given to the merchant by a friend in India, is his most prized possession ("He loved the pretty bird with all his heart"), and he places it in a golden cage. But the parrot looks miserable. When the merchant plans a trip back to India and asks the parrot what gift to bring back, the parrot asks the man to deliver a message to his winged friend ("Tell him that I would love to see him, but I can't because I live in a cage"). Green drapes surround the man and his pet, depicting birds in flight with wings outspread. In India, the merchant spies his parrot's friend and delivers the message in his pet's exact words. The winged friend's response gives the merchant's parrot just what he needs.

Rashin's artwork, steeped in the colors of the Iranian flag, play out motifs of captivity and freedom in the patterns on the grass and the wild red birds outside the parrot's window. --Jennifer M. Brown, children's editor, Shelf Awareness

Discover: Iranian-born artist Rashin's reimagining of a tale of freedom by Rumi.

NorthSouth, $17.95, hardcover, 32p., ages 5-8, 9780735841710

Powered by: Xtenit