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Articles tagged "Children's Literature"

As It Happened: PEN American Center “Translating Books for Youth” at the Brooklyn Book Festival

At the Brooklyn Book Festival, the PEN Translation Committee brought together three translators and one publisher of international children’s books for a conversation about the importance of bringing books from non-English speaking countries to young readers in the United States. Committee co-chair Alex Zucker moderated the panel that included Claudia Zoe Bedrick, Brooklyn-based publisher of Enchanted Lion Books, and translators Mara Lethem, Julia Heim, and Lyn Miller-Lachmann, chair...

from “The Boys”

It was a balmy night, spring had started to slip into early summer, the trees’ leaves were thick and bright green. We didn’t speak, we only looked each other in the eyes and received the paper bags that Momo ceremoniously handed to us. And when I opened my bag in Bella’s room, my heart started beating so fast it hammered in my ears. She had made me a tiger costume. There was a hooded coat and a pair of elbow-length gloves, the tip of each finger adorned with a golden...

Wizard Bakery

The Devil’s Cinnamon Cookies. 2 per serving. 9000 won. Ingredients: flour, cinnamon, brown sugar, raisins, and a secret extract. The essence of the extract will not be revealed, as certain ingredients may be found revolting. (Baker’s note: Extract contains no known allergens, so not to worry. Besides, you’re not going to eat it yourself!) Product Details: Give the cookie to someone you don’t like. The cookie will mentally incapacitate the recipient for an average...

Nom de Guerre: Butterfly

That evening, I was sitting on my bed. Tala was jumping up and down on her bed next to mine, making it squeak annoyingly. She was jabbering away but I wasn’t following what she was saying because I was busy building my own world inside my head. Tala kept running in and out of the room. I didn’t notice how long she was gone. I just sat there, lost in thought. That is, until the time the sound of Salim sobbing came into the room before Tala did. As soon as I saw him, I hurried...

In Search of the End of the World

I was brought into the world on a day of black misery. My mother, desperate and drained of strength, was nothing but skin and bones. Her body had become a frozen desert. She died in her struggle to give me life. Hunger was my first companion, and it has never left me since. It is always there, in my belly, relentlessly plaguing and torturing me within. My grandmother, old Kokum, the village midwife, attended my mother during the birth. Apparently I was no bigger than a young hare....

No Light in the Windows

Christmas was a weary old man when he entered the city. Puffy-eyed and heavy-legged, he dragged himself along, from street to street, from flat to flat. Our door must have been the last one on a long list, because when he finally got here, I slept through the presents and was comatose long before the oohing and aahing had faded away. There was nothing worth staying up for. I didn’t care about any of our relatives and because Dad wasn’t living here any more, half of them stayed...

Rasha

Red welts had appeared on Rasha’s palm from Razzak Sir's caning, which meant she had to be very careful for the next few days to keep her grandmother from seeing them. Of course, her grandmother didn't take anything very seriously, so it’s possible she would not have asked about it even if it had caught her eye. Still, Rasha wasn't taking any chances. If her grandmother asked, Rasha would have to disclose everything, which she simply did not want to do. All her...

My Mother’s Garage Sale

Every spring my mother decides to organize a garage sale. But every spring she wonders whether she should do it. "I really don't know if I should, Christophe. It's so much work." "You're right, Maman! Just skip it this time." "Each and every year I'm the one who does it all." "Yes, and then you get yourself worked up for nothing. Just skip it this time." "Plus I'm no good at setting prices. I never ask for enough." "That's true: you waste time and...

Marked by the Moon: An Ancient Tale

Once upon a time, a long time ago-a very, very long time ago-in a corner of the world that was neither faraway nor near, there lived a girl whose name was Moon-Fairy. Moon-Fairy was kindhearted and helpful to everyone, but she carried a huge burden of sadness. She had no family or friends in the whole wide world. She was very lonely. She had been living with Bibi Khanom for as long as she could remember. Bibi Khanom had a daughter by the name of Golabetun, who was pretty but not kind. She...

Please Leave a Message

Dina and Shlomo went out shopping. Their son, Dudi, stayed home. He didn't stay alone. Tally, his baby sister, stayed with him. His dog Rexie stayed with him too. Before Dudi's mother and father left, they stopped at the door for a moment, and his mother said: "If Tally cries, give her a pacifier." And his father said: "If the phone rings, just say we'll be back soon." "Okay," Dudi said, and they left. Dudi was sitting on the floor, playing with his fire engine....

The Angel’s Feather

Once upon a time an angel lost a feather. It hardly ever happens, only once every two or three hundred years, but it does happen. The angel was flying over a solitary lake, through the bluest waters of the sky; forests and blossoming meadows stretched as far as his eye could reach. He was enchanted to see such radiant beauty and descended to skim the water. It was then that he lost the feather. The water shivered as he passed, and when the angel rose towards the sky, the feather remained,...

Granny Long Tongue

This story is set in the time when monsters were still living up there in the mountains and down here in the forests. Granny Long Tongue and Red Ban the Ogre lived high up on Mt. Okuyama, at Okumata Pass. The woman's tongue was longer than a snakevine, stronger than a stable boy's whip. Red Ban's face was broader than a cottage window, and when he bared his tusks and moved his face up close to yours, he was so scary that even the mountain bears rolled their eyes in fright....

It’s a Chick, Not a Dog

We live in the big house, all of us-men and women, boys and girls, and my mother and me. My mother captures all my attention. And she's ruled my heart too. I watch my mother no matter where she is: for she's the one who brings the hammer and pounds the nail into the wall so she can hang up a picture of my father. And she's the one who sends me off to buy half a kilo of cement and half a kilo of gypsum. Then she makes a paste. She closes up all the holes in the house and...

Viktoria Was Home All Alone

Everybody was gone, and Viktoria was home all alone. "When everybody's gone, my house is a magic place." She went to her parents' bedroom and pulled back the bedspread. A big bear lay in the middle of the bed. He looked right at her. "Aha!" Viktoria said. "Give me something," she said. The bear walked out of the room and brought her dad's hat to her. Viktoria put it on. Then she covered up the bear again. She opened her mom's nightstand. And there sat a big...
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