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Friends Journal is made for readers, and we look forward to introducing our readers to all manner of books relevant to the Quaker experience. Every issue is packed with insightful and honest reviews of books of interest to Friends.

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Pond

By Jim LaMarche. Simon & Schuster/Paula Wiseman Books, 2016. 40 pages. $17.99/hardcover; $10.99/eBook. Recommended for ages 4–8. Pond is a picture-story book for school-age children about habitat restoration set in the upper Midwest or Northeast. Matt discovers a spring in an area known as “the pit.” His sister, Katie, and their friend Pablo join him […]

Sandy and Tom Farley are members of Palo Alto (Calif.) Meeting and coauthors of Earthcare for Children, a curriculum they are currently revising.


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Be the Change: A Grandfather Gandhi Story

By Arun Gandhi and Bethany Hegedus, illustrated by Evan Turk. Atheneum Books for Young Readers, 2016. 48 pages. $18.99/hardcover; $5.99/eBook. Recommended for ages 4–8. As a teacher of nonviolence, Mohandas Gandhi can take on superhero proportions in the imagination. It could be easy to revere his example while finding it impossible to follow. We have […]

Lisa Rand lives on a small farm in Berks County, Pa. She writes a blog at Lighttoreadby.wordpress.com.


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Du Iz Tak?

By Carson Ellis. Candlewick Press, 2016. 48 pages. $16.99/hardcover. Recommended for ages 4–8. On the opening pages of Du Iz Tak?, a caterpillar, wearing an improbable number of shoes, clambers along the underside of a twig, dangles there by the last two of those shoes, then says, “Ta ta!” and wraps herself into a well-formed […]

Margaret T. Walden is a school librarian, retired from Friends School in Detroit, and now a member of Cleveland (Ohio) Meeting.


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The Storyteller

By Evan Turk. Atheneum Books for Young Readers, 2016. 48 pages. $18.99/hardcover; $4.99/eBook. Recommended for ages 4–8. Occasionally a book that is marketed to young children is a treasure trove for everyone. Evan Turk’s book is a wonderful example of the power of the story. In this original tale based in Morocco, Turk has created […]

Katie Green is a member of Worcester (Mass.) Meeting and a professional storyteller. She has told stories at the Friends General Conference Gathering and New England Yearly Meeting annual sessions.


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The Sound of Silence

By Katrina Goldsaito, illustrated by Julia Kuo. Little, Brown Books for Young Readers, 2016. 40 pages. $17.99/hardcover; $9.99/eBook. Recommended for ages 4–8. A young Japanese boy on his way to school meets a traditional koto player who challenges him with the idea that the most beautiful sound is silence. There in the middle of Tokyo, […]

Alison James is a member of South Starksboro (Vt.) Meeting.


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A Bike Like Sergio’s

By Maribeth Boelts, illustrated by Noah Z. Jones. Candlewick Press, 2016. 40 pages. $15.99/hardcover. Recommended for ages 5–8. This is that rare story—a moral tale that’s subtle and suspenseful. Ruben wants a bike. He knows just how a bike would improve his already pleasant, though not opulent, life. On an errand to buy some groceries […]

Dee Birch Cameron is a librarian in El Paso, Tex., whose work has appeared previously in Friends Journal.


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A Year of Borrowed Men

By Michelle Barker, illustrated by Renne Benoit. Pajama Press, 2015. 40 pages. $18.95/hardcover. Recommended for ages 6–9. As a child of World War II, born on the edge of London in 1941, I was intrigued by the voice of Gerda, growing up in Germany at the same time. When I was a child, Germans were […]

Margaret Crompton (Britain Yearly Meeting) is a writer and lecturer whose publications include Pendle Hill Pamphlet #419 Nurturing Children’s Spiritual Well-being.


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Stepping Stones: A Refugee Family’s Journey

By Margriet Ruurs, translated by Falah Raheem, illustrated by Nizar Ali Badr. Orca Book Publishers, 2016. 28 pages. $20/hardcover; $9.99/eBook. Recommended for ages 6–10. Stepping Stones: A Refugee Family’s Journey tells the heartrending story of Rama, a little girl whose life changes dramatically. At first, her childhood is delightful. She eats a delicious breakfast prepared […]

Diya Abdo is a native Arabic speaker and associate professor and department chair of English at Guilford College in Greensboro, N.C. She is the founder and director of Every Campus a Refuge.


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Somos como las nubes / We Are Like the Clouds

By Jorge Argueta, illustrated by Alfonso Ruano. Groundwood Books, 2016. 36 pages. $18.95/hardcover; $16.95/PDF. Recommended for ages 7–12. A book of poems, in Spanish with English translations, Somos como las nubes / We Are Like the Clouds is a poignant exploration in words (by Jorge Argueta) and images (by Alfonso Ruano) of the experience of […]

Ken Jacobsen currently teaches theology and ministry formation at Chicago Theological Seminary. Bilingual from his upbringing in Venezuela, Ken has an ongoing concern for north-south dialogue among Friends in the Americas, a concern he focused on in his years of service with Friends World Committee for Consultation.


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Nine, Ten: A September 11 Story

By Nora Raleigh Baskin. Atheneum Books for Young Readers, 2016. 208 pages. $16.99/hardcover; $7.99/paperback (released May 16, 2017); $10.99/eBook. Recommended for ages 8–12. The introduction to this book gives a hint as to what comes next. My immediate thought was: I wonder how this story would land for me if I had not experienced that […]

Lucinda Hathaway is a member of Sarasota (Fla.) Meeting and author of Takashi’s Voyage: The Wreck of the Sindia and ’Round the World: Takashi Sails Home.


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