• Interest Level: Kindergarten - Grade 2   ·  
  • Reading Level: Grade 2

A boy who is too young to understand the war raging outside finds joy in a mother’s love.

Yazan no longer goes to the park to play, and he no longer sees his friend who lives next door. Everything around him is changing. His parents sit in front of the television with the news turned up LOUD and Yazan’s little red bike leans forgotten against the wall. Will he ever be able to go outside and play?

An uplifting story about a courageous little boy growing up in a time of conflict, and the strength of family love.

USBBY Outstanding International Book. Little Rebels Award shortlist. Sakura Medal Longlist. Middle East Book Award Honorable Mention.

“A story about how together we can build a better world”—Babel Babies

“Kaadan’s artwork is stunning. Capturing mood so brilliantly she conveys her characters’ emotions through every paint stroke”—My Book Corner

“The book will delight young children – there are bicycles and paper planes and annoying parents. But the impact of the war is what stays with you, the broken buildings, the falling debris, the worried faces. It is a radical, courageous thing for Kaadan to have created”—The National

Format Your Price Add
Interest Level Kindergarten - Grade 2
Reading Level Grade 2
Genre Fiction, Picture Books
Category SEL: A Self-Awareness, SEL: B Self-Management, SEL: C Social Awareness, SEL: D Relationship Skills, SEL: E Responsible Decision-Making, Social Emotional Learning
Copyright 2018
Publisher Lantana Publishing
Imprint Lantana Publishing
Language English
Number of Pages 32
Publication Date 2018-09-01
Text Type Fiction
BISACS JUV030110, JUV015010, JUV039180
Dewey [Fic]
Graphics Full-color illustrations
Dimensions 8.25 x 10.25
Lexile 540
ATOS Reading Level 3.0
Accelerated Reader® Quiz 199213
Accelerated Reader® Points 0.5
Features Author/Illustrator biography, Awards, and Original artwork


  • 2021 Sakura Medal Longlist, Long-listed, 2021
  • Middle East Book Award Honorable Mention, Commended, 2020
  • USBBY Outstanding International Books List, Winner, 2019
  • Children’s Book Committee at the Bank Street Center for Children’s Literature Best Children’s Books of the Year, Winner, 2019

Author, Illustrator: Nadine Kaadan

Nadine Kaadan is an award-winning author-illustrator from Syria. She writes stories inspired by Syria's rich cultural heritage and is committed to helping child refugees in Europe and the Middle East.