He can still picture once being happy and safe, but memories of those days are fading as he and his family face the dangers threatening Jews in Hitler's Germany in the late 's. No longer able to practice their religion, vote, own property, or even work, Daniel's family is forced from their home in Frankfurt and sent on a long and dangerous journey, first to the Lodz ghetto in Poland, and then to Auschwitz, the Nazi death camp.

Though many around him lose hope in the face of such terror, Daniel, supported by his courageous family, struggles for survival. He finds hope, life and even love in the midst of despair. A delightful fantasy for Middle Grades. Changing the world was impossible. Creating another one was worse. And escape was out.

Martha Freeman

She was trapped. A collaboration between acclaimed writers Carol Matas and Perry Nodelman, this roller coaster of an adventure is filled with twists and turns, excitement and fun.

It is an extraordinary creative fantasy about empowerment that compels readers not to take everything at face value. Avaiable in print and ebook formats. An unforgettable reminder of the resilience of human compassion, even in the face of the worst horrors of our history.

In the autumn ofAnna Hirsch and her friends and family are rounded up by Nazis and deported to Gurs, a refugee camp in the south of France. Food is scarce, and the living conditions inhumane. But when word comes that Anna and the other children are to be moved, their destination is not Auschwitz or Buchenwald, but Le Chambon-sur-Lignon: a tiny village whose citizens have agreed to care for deported Jewish children.

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Based on the true story of a French village that banded together to protect the Jews during WWII, this unforgettable tale honours the contagious goodness that permeated one corner of a region otherwise enveloped in evil, and celebrates the courage of all those who put their lives at risk to save others.

Available from: Amazon.

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When I Die is a meditation on death that will resonate with children of all ages. Are you looking for a way to talk about death to your child or grandchild?

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Are you grappling with the issue of your own mortality? When I Diea simple but powerful meditation, can give you a safe place to start the discussion. I have changed it a little but it is almost exactly as I 'heard' it originally. But I feel comforted by it in some strange way. Some people tend to think they are the centre of the universe and all important. I tend to think that there is a balance in almost everything. We are all the most important things in the universe- after all, Jewish thought says that if you save one life you have saved the world.

And it is also true that the world will go on without us and that is a good thing. Everything is important or nothing is important. I believe everything is. As Rose begins her diary, she is in her third home since coming to Winnipeg.Post a Comment.

Martha Freeman is the author of Zapa new novel for kids. She lives in Philadelphia. Q: How did you come up with the idea for Zap? A: My engineer friend Anthony mentioned a friend of his who was fascinated with the power grid. This made me realize how little I knew about the subject myself. There happened to be a new book about the grid by Ted Koppelso I read that — and was alarmed by the dangerous scenarios he described.

I wanted to know more, and writing a book is a good excuse to do research. Q: You based your character Luis on a real-life person. What made you decide he would make a good fictional character?

A: As with all my books, there was more than one inspiration. They worked very hard when they came to New Jersey, and young Luis — born in the USA -- was left to his own devices at times. He grew up in a tough town and had some harrowing experiences, stuff I had a hard time even imagining.

Spoiler alert: He went to college. In a way, Zap is a book for the kid Luis now 29 used to be. In every case, I use my imagination to get into the heads of my characters — and I do research as well. Because Luis is a real person with his own life story, I was extra scrupulous and asked him a whole lot of questions.

The book includes a letter from the real Luis and pictures of him in the appendix. Q: What do you hope kids take away from this story? With ZapI also hope they learn something about the science and engineering that underlies technology we all take for granted.

After the effects of hurricanes on the electric grids of Puerto Rico and Texas this year, the story seems especially relevant. Q: What kind of research did you need to do to write this? A: Oh my gosh — so much! I read extensively on the power grid and electricity in general. Ask me anything about Michael Faraday.Post a Comment.

Her many other books for kids include Zap! Wow Never Wanted a Cow. She lives in Boulder, Colorado. A: Like a lot of people, I have found myself going to a lot of marches since January To make lemonade out of the situation -- this is a good thing.

I think many of us were complacent and the current political situation has shaken us awake.

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Shaken us "woke"? At these marches, there were a lot of kids. Since many of the issues gun violence, family separation, climate change disproportionately affect today's kids today and as representatives of future generations -- this made sense. But I thought young children especially might not know what to expect at a march, and might not know the larger significance of political action in a democracy even if they'd been to one or two. I also thought parents could use a book like mine as a jumping off point for talking with their kids.

A: Overwhelmingly positive! One blogger especially lauded me for putting portapotties in the book. He didn't think he'd ever seen portapotties in a picture book before. This made me laugh, but I did want to get down to the nitty gritty of marching, and that's definitely part of the deal along with traffic and parking.

I anticipated some pushback from adults who don't think kids should be involved in things they don't understand -- at least I think that's the point they're trying to make. There are a couple of online reviews to that effect.

To that I and most readers say, so leave kids home from Sunday school and science class, too -- God and science are obviously too big for kids to understand. Likewise, I've always rejected the idea that kids' books should be written in kids' vocabularies. How do you learn new words or new ideas if you're only exposed to what's familiar?

I mean, at the most fundamental level, what is a book for? Learning, right? A: A whole lot! I was so grateful that Sterling approached her and she accepted. I think they strike just the right tone, playful without trivializing the importance of the message.

book q&as with deborah kalb: q&a with ruth freeman

Most of my books are middle-grades, so it's been fun to see my words brought to life in illustrations. I particularly like the final spread where you see my kids' various bedrooms -- definite clues to their varied personalities and backgrounds there. A: I hope kids are informed and families are energized to get back out there and march for what they believe in. A: A bunch of things, but today besides answering your thoughtful questions a hilarious re-telling of Little Red Riding Hood in which Grandma may or may not be a wicked queen, and Bobby Bear formerly known as Baby helps her navigate woods and wolf.

It was really fun to research and to write. I learned a ton, and readers will, too. No comments:. Newer Post Older Post Home. Subscribe to: Post Comments Atom.Post a Comment.

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Martha Freeman is the author of more than two dozen books for children. She lives in Philadelphia. Q: How did you end up collaborating with Mark Kelly on the Astrotwins books, and what is the writing process like between you?

I have been interested in space from an early age. My dad gave me a telescope when I was very young and together we would look at the stars and planets. I am old enough to remember not only the moon landing in but barely the Gemini and Mercury missions of the '60s. It was a forward-looking and exciting time.

book q&as with deborah kalb: q&a with ruth freeman

The astronauts were real American heroes in an uncomplicated way that seems hard to imagine now. So -- long story short -- I jumped at the chance. As for the writing process, Mark Kelly is the brains of the operation. He provided the plot, the voice and the true-life details about his and Scott's childhood. I did most of the word-by-word stuff -- I call it putting in the commas -- while he continually made sure the manuscript stayed true to his vision with his suggestions, revisions and corrections.

I also did a lot of research on my own. Mark is a very busy guy, and I didn't want to drive him crazy with questions about details that I could learn from other sources. I still have the 11 books I read for background on a shelf in my living room -- many astronaut memoirs as well as some more general science reading. Q: Did you know when you were working on the first Astrotwins book that it would become a series? How did you come up with the idea for this book?

A: Strudel is the story of a dachshund who ends up in a shelter after a calamity of some sort that he can't quite remember.

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I was inspired when I heard a news story on the radio about kids reading to shelter animals, both to keep the animals company and to help the kids improve their reading. Great idea, I thought! Another inspiration was a young man's suggestion during a school visit that I write about my childhood dachshund, Max.

Once he said it, I couldn't imagine why I hadn't done it already. At the time, I had just written The Orphan and the Mousewhich is told from rotating points of view -- animals included. So I thought I sort of had the animal persona down. As for the South Philadelphia setting, I had recently moved to South Philadelphia when I began writing, and like Strudel I was exploring the neighborhood, so it made sense. Also, compared to New York, Philadelphia doesn't get that much love in contemporary children's books.

Do you have a preference? A: I am always trying to write simpler books for younger kids, and it rarely works. My plots have a way of getting out of control. I am in awe of Mo Willems, Jon Klassen, Alice Schertle and all the authors who can tell a grand story at picturebook length.

Q: What are you working on now? Four girls meet at summer camp and keep the friendship going by sending one another cookies during the school year. It's based super loosely on my own summer camp experience -- but updated. The girls are very different from one another but thanks in part to cookies they get along famously. The books are a little happier than life perhaps, but also funny, and they have a lot of heart if I do say so myself. I have had so much fun with the Astrotwins books that I'd like to try something in the same spirit but on my own.

This time it won't be space. Q: Anything else we should know? A: I've actually written 27 books for children, among them The First Kids series, which take place in the White House and star the kids of the first woman president, and the Chickadee Court mysteries, which feature an ace detective cat named Luau.I have never practiced family law and I have no plans to, but it is not an exaggeration to say that what I learned from Professor Fineman has, to this day, informed my legal work, my thinking, and my writing.

I thought of her just a few weeks ago when a friend on Facebook was posting about state laws and underage marriage believe it or not, it is permissible most places with parental consent and how I had learned about that in Family Law as an example of how the marital rape exemption is still not entirely purged from our laws and our culture. Despite her busy schedule, she found some time to talk with me on the phone and answer some questions.

Good to talk to you today! Thank you for taking the time to discuss your work, which I really do appreciate. I am working in the area of social justice; how we, as individuals, make a claim on the state for resources, and how a state must be responsive to human needs.

Arguing about discrimination has been the major way we have addressed inequality throughout the twentieth century, beginning with the civil rights movements of the s. The human rights movement has recently taken the fight for equality beyond the idea of discrimination, with economic and social rights in addition to political rights, being the focus.

My work on human vulnerability moves beyond identity politics and notions of individual responsibility to consider the whole nature and extent of state responsibility more broadly. The criminal law treats financial crimes much more harshly than it treats violence…can you speak a bit to that?

What the vulnerability approach demands is not just a comparison within categories, but a total rethinking of law, the whole approach to criminal law, tort law, contract law. These areas of law all rely on the concept of an independent, autonomous, rational male subject — laws are built along that notion of the rational human being who is at liberty to make choices and have freedoms—this vision of what it means to be human is at the center of how we organize society.

None of us are that autonomous, independent being. Vulnerability theory recognizes our universal, shared dependence on other human beings and also on social institutions and relationships.

We are always dependent on social arrangements and institutions from infancy to old age. What is the social function of the relationship? Parents are given an inordinate amount of control over children there is no other relationship besides slavery which gives more and we should consider when and under what circumstances is that fair?

Those would be the questions asked in a vulnerability analysis. How I got to the concept of vulnerability was by considering the inevitability of human dependency and its impact on gender equality. It took me years to get to the point where I asked questions beyond discrimination. The realization came while addressing how the state should take into account and structure caretaking. I realized that this is not a gender problem, even though women do a disproportional amount of caretaking work.

Social institutions — the workplace, and the state in the way it regards the delivery of social goods — make it difficult to be a caretaker and participate in the political and economic arenas of life. If it is, it has significant implications for reform. If the problem is discrimination, the solution is not to discriminate — make men be caretakers, for example. So we have to ask, what is the remedy we want? How we define the problem also suggests the remedy.Her other novels include The Keeper of Lost Things.

She is based in the UK. The Paradise Hotel was a perfect home for these people. I was also interested in exploring the relationship between mothers and daughters and how complex and conflicting it can be. The character of Tilda known as Tilly when she was a child is based on many of my own memories when I was growing up.

It was great fun to reminisce when I was writing about her experiences, but I also share some characteristics with Tilda. Q: You tell the story in two timelines, Tilda as an adult and as a child. Did you write the novel in the order in which it appears, or did you focus more on one timeline before turning to the other one? A: Ooh, I love a dual narrative! It can be a real challenge and I enjoy stretching myself as a writer. I always write the novel in the order it appears on the page. I think this really helps to achieve the right balance between the two narratives for the reader.

Q: Did you know how the novel would end before you started writing it, or did you make many changes along the way? A: For me, writing a novel is like going on a journey. Q: In your acknowledgments, you thank the city of Brighton. How important is setting to you in your writing?

InI eloped to Brighton, got married in the Royal Pavilion and marched down the pier in my massive meringue of a frock to ride on the carousel of galloping horses with my new husband. I needed somewhere where my quirky characters would feel at home.

Brighton is colourful, a bit bonkers and very inclusive — somewhere where differences are tolerated, even celebrated. Q: What are you working on now? Q: Anything else we should know? I have a sparkly crown and two toy corgis I also have three rescue dogs!

I still have her pedigree to prove it! Ruth Hogan, photo by Harpur Studios.Post a Comment. Her many other books for younger readers include the Secret Cookie Club series and the First Kid mysteries.

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She has worked as a journalist, a teacher, and an advertising copywriter, and she lives in Philadelphia. Q: How did you come up with the idea for your new novel, and for your character Effie? A: The real Effie was a woman who made wreaths and other things she cobbled together after she was widowed. She was a country girl in Pennsylvania, nothing much like the Effie in the book. The name fascinated me.

book q&as with deborah kalb: q&a with ruth freeman

Her daughter lived on a farm with goats in Central Pennsylvania, and my daughter volunteered on her farm. All my books come from a hodgepodge…I did a reading at a fair in Central Pennsylvania.

I came up with an idea that there were conservative religious people out there, very private. I concocted a whole story about [this]. It was more interesting to invent the whole beard idea [that's in the book], less controversial than using a real religion or cult-esque idea. It sometimes feels like whatever I ate for breakfast, or what I saw out the window [inspires my writing].

With the solar airplane, I was thinking of Howard Hughes, and cobbling together different ideas and hoping it turned into a story! Q: You dedicate the book to reporters. Why did you choose that as your dedication, and do you think Effie would make a good journalist? A: I do think Effie will make a good reporter! It gives you a license to be nosy. Effie is much braver than I was. She has self-confidence.


I wish I had that underlying confidence. Especially in these times, I have so much respect for reporters.

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They just want to tell the truth…. I used to teach journalism. I would tell the students in class that reporters were good. I do some corporate writing too. I was writing about arc flashing, when electricity jumps through the air.

Effie is like me in that way. Q: Family secrets play a big role in the novel.

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