Hi, I’m Jenny. I love sharing books with kids, big and small. I love introducing them to new friends, new worlds and new experiences. The only thing that could tempt me away from teaching was this magical bookshop!
Salama Kassab was a pharmacy student when the cries for freedom broke out in Syria. She still had her parents and her big brother; she still had her home. She had a normal teenager’s life.
Now Salama volunteers at a hospital in Homs, helping the wounded who flood through the doors daily. Secretly, though, she is desperate to find a way out of her beloved country before her sister-in-law, Layla, gives birth. So desperate, that she has manifested a physical embodiment of her fear in the form of her imagined companion, Khawf, who haunts her every move in an effort to keep her safe.
But even with Khawf pressing her to leave, Salama is torn between her loyalty to her country and her conviction to survive. Salama must contend with bullets and bombs, military assaults, and her shifting sense of morality before she might finally breathe free. And when she crosses paths with the boy she was supposed to meet one fateful day, she starts to doubt her resolve in leaving home at all.
Soon, Salama must learn to see the events around her for what they truly are—not a war, but a revolution—and decide how she, too, will cry for Syria’s freedom.
Set in Melbourne in 1942, Maggie Flanagan is missing her older brother who is off fighting for his country. Practising her footy and supporting her beloved St Kilda Football Club are the most important things to 12 year old Maggie until the day the nuns at her school suggest a fundraising event to help support the troops. Maggie has the daring idea to stage an all female footy match which does not go down well at all. Girls should run bake sales and have a sewing stall, they definitely should not be doing something so unladylike as to play footy! Well, Maggie has different ideas...
Felice Arena has set his story in an era where women and girls are starting to see greater opportunities presented to them. The war has seen many of the men leave so jobs and traditionally male roles are opening up to women. This is a fascinating snapshot of an era when gender roles were being questioned and determined girls like Maggie were changing the world, one footy match at a time.