MCBD is blessed with enthusiastic participation and brilliant talent from all over the globe, but our beloved Greek supporters, reviewers, authors, and publishers deserve a special round of praise and recognition!
Thanks to the hard work and dedication of Global CoHost, Agatha Rodi, we are proud to share this Global Collaboration with Greek Authors and Supporters. Enjoy!
Two Book Reviews from Elisavet Arkolaki
The Secrets Hidden Beneath the Palm Tree by Angeliki Stamatopoulou-Pedersen
This early childhood book is written from a mother’s point of view with the purpose of helping hard of hearing or deaf children and their families at the critical mainstream stage.
It is the story of Angelia and Jacob, two kids destined to be best friends, and it all begins on their first day at school. Angelia is curious about something behind the ears of Jacob (hearing aid), and the two kids engage in a very informative dialogue. Angelia learns how to be a good and helpful friend, and appreciates that Jacob is smart and able to succeed when his needs are met. Angelia is also introduced to a new set of vocabulary like hearing aids, sign language, audiologist, cochlear implant, a speech pathologist.
As the author addresses in her book “Mainstream schooling for strong kids with weak hearing requires information, acceptance, and support from young and old’. A must-have book for educators, caregivers, speech therapists, school libraries and public libraries. Through the story and the illustrations, we get to see how hearing impaired and non-hearing impaired students can thrive harmoniously both in and out of the classroom. When young children get exposed to differences in others, they learn tolerance, empathy and create new ways of learning.
At first glance, Bel Bechamel can be described as a culinary adventure for aspiring chefs. But it’s so much more than that. It feels like a classic fairytale, in a modern setting, with a heroine who travels the whole wide world before discovering her true self and how she wishes to live her life. Multi-layered with many topics weaved masterfully within the story’s fabric. With handmade tortellini, traditional pies and warm bowls of soup as the background, the author Christina Konstandoudaki creates a delightful story about family love, values, humility, achieving goals, friendship, and solidarity. The illustrator Αlexandra Colombo also did an amazing job; vibrant, colorful illustrations and the most adorable characters.
Katerina Mouriki reviews Boy and Eagle by Katerina Nika, illustrator: Peggy Fourka, publisher: Ellinoekdotiki, 2019
I read with great interest the Katerina Nika’s book, “Boy and eagle.” It is a book for young readers over the age of 7, as well as parents and teachers, as it has many aspects that can be worked out between family or classroom.
In the first part of the book, we see an eagle. A powerful, courageous bird that conquers the sky and travels to every corner of the earth. Because of its high flying, sharp eyesight, as it can see its prey from afar, it is called “the king of the winged world.”
The eagle reaches over a farm where various animals live carefree, with no problems of life and no high goal pursuit. There is also a little boy on the farm who, as he sees the eagle, scares and urges him to leave the farm immediately. He even adds with enough pride that he has many beloved animals and friends around him. He also says that his knowledge and training are so abundant that the presence of the eagle offers him nothing more.
The animals on the farm support the little boy and urge the eagle to leave while everyone presents his or her qualifications as he or she means to them. The eagle listens to everyone with great patience.
But in the end, he talks about his life. He warmly describes the beauties of the earth as he watches them on his high flights.
The animals seem unaffected by his descriptions and narration. However, the child appears to have been affected. He must choose whether to stay on the farm or to follow the eagle on its high flights. In other words, what life course will follow.
He asks the eagle to go with him to see the beauty of the sky. The eagle accepts, and the child experiences an unprecedented experience. His soul fills with light, and he feels happy as he reaches a high goal. The journey is over. The eagle brought the child back to the farm to meet the other animals. Before his leaving, he gives the boy some advice: “Your feet should stand on the ground, but your spirit will always seek the high peaks.”
“Boy and eagle” of Katerina Nika, is a text with significant symbolic meaning, written in rhythmic form. The vocabulary is rich and familiar to children, and the illustration by Peggy Fourka is excellent. The experienced writer, Katerina Nika, very correctly chose the eagle as a symbol of our soul’s tendency for high and heavenly values. The story is full of symbols decoded by the child slowly and gently as the story unfolds. Each animal represents a different human character with various concerns and ambitions.
Activity Ideas for Boy and Eagle
The concept of the book is suitable for further editing and discussion in the family or school.
• For example, the animator – educator or parent – have the chance to talk to children about the eagle and other birds of prey.
• He can also talk about the animals in the field and what characteristics each animal has, e.g. DOG – LOST FRIEND, donkey-patience, rooster-pride, etc.
On the other hand, children can:
• criticize the behavior of animals and children.
• talk about their dreams and goals.
They can also:
• Paint their favorite animal or
• something that the eagle encounters on its flights.
In conclusion, I recommend you read Katerina Nika’s book “Boy and Eagle.” You will surely travel with the eagle on high and heavenly journeys of life and soul.
Katerina Mouriki was born in Athens and has studied Chemistry, Statistics, and Economics. She was working for the Agricultural University in Athens, in the Ecology department, as an assistant chemist. She has counted 87 books many of them won National and International awards.
As a founding member of Greek Women’s Literary Team, she took part in cultural events and participated in many programs in schools on the subject: “The play-learning of creative writing”. In October till the end of November 2019, she took part in the 5th International Writing Program as a fellow writer from Lu Xun Academy of Literature in Beijing. In November 2019 her short story “It was a sea and a dream” received praise from the Greek section of UNESCO.
Eleni Vasileiou-Asteroskoni reviews The Water Amazon Fairy Called Myrtia by Eva Petropoulou Lianos
I have chosen to present you the latest children’s book, by Eva Petropoulou Lianos, as through it, I too have acquired a strange and magical power that can take me where beautiful fairy tales stand. Her heroine is real, she is alive and gives her battle to return strong and stand on her feet again. This is a girl who years ago experienced violence in its worst form. Myrto Papadomichelaki, was Transformed to an Amazonian fairy Into the Tale, the story wrote and dedicated from the writer Eva Petropoulou Lianou, who managed to get the reader excited and to help Myrto get to faster…..
The warmth contained in this beautifully illustrated fairy tale reaches our hearts and we feel lucky that this fairytale has reached our hands. Οnce upon A TIME and years before ……… .the King’s daughter, the most courageous and best in sports but also his most beautiful daughter. Together with her faithful friend, her dog, she seeks the treasure with the most precious gem of goodness … where she would keep the underworld, the intermediate, and the upper, united. Through this adventure of the route, Eva Petropoulou Lianou, gives us life lessons, hope, and true friendship. Unfolding the red tissue with her, the one that holding the fairy tales in our world Creating a sense of nostalgia and optimism, I suggest this book the Amazonian water fairytale for your Library!
Born in Piraeus and of Cretan origin, Eleni Vassiliou is a self-taught painter and poet. She has held solo exhibitions and has participated in charity groups. She has published two poetry collections, a play and a children’s book dedicated to the fight against childhood cancer. In 2014 she moved to Germany where she continues her career in art. On December 22, 2018, the Nuremberg Hellenic Art Club (Griechischer Kunstclub Nürnberg e.V.) found her literary work remarkable and presented her as one of the new poets of her generation. In 2016 she is included in volume 28 of the New Greek Literature H. Patsi In 2018 she is included in the “Contemporary Anthology of Modern Greek Poetry” Poetry Academy In 2019 she is included in the 1st “Encyclopedia of Modern Greek Writers” KEFALOS – KEFALONIA LITERATURE MAGAZINE. In November 2019 she is awarded by the KEFALONIA-KEFALOS LITERATURE MAGAZINE with the ATHENS THEA Award for A. the quality of her works; B. the evaluation of her work, and C. her contribution to her work and her active presence in letters, intellect and intellectual activity. In November 2019 she is awarded by UNESCO Group of Piraeus and Islands for her contribution to Culture. In November 2019 she is awarded by the Association of Visual Artists LANASSA for Carriers of Cancer Patients and Other Patients in Greece and Cyprus for her voluntary action against childhood cancer with her work. In December 2019, she was accepted as a new member of the Piraeus Literary and Art Society, after evaluation of her literary work. Her first book ‘Forgotten Fairies’ is in the Nuremberg Municipal Library (Stadtbibliothek Nürnberg) on the shelves of Greek Writers and in the National Library of Greece at the Stavros Niarchos Foundation. Her paintings are in permanent collections in Municipal Art Galleries in Greece, on ANEK ships, in Institutions, and in School Units.
More information can be found via her blog : asteroskoni.wordpress.com
Katerina Nika Manou Reviews SAINT LOUCAS THE DOCTOR AND SHEPHERD by Katerina Mouriki
Illustrator: Spyros Gousis, Publisher: Athens, Stamoulis 2019
The Author Katerina Mouriki, in her book SAINT LOUKAS, describes the image of St. Lucas. He, as a brilliant scientist and professor of Medicine with a firm faith in God who operates patients with no tools but with great success in times of war and civil unrest (Russian-Japanese War 1904 – October 1917…).
As a family man, struggling to stand up with his four orphaned children in the ordeal of the great pain of losing his wife.
As a priest (Tashkent), he accepts the inclination of God to perform the sacrifice of His Love. At the same time offers his scientific knowledge and Christian love as a surgeon in the bed of many patients.
As a humble monk by the name “Lucas,” he is embraced in a poor robe.
As a martyred bishop who in the threats, persecutions, an exile for many years (up to the North Pole) of the atheistic regime, sees the first persecuted, the One who inspires, guides, and fortifies him in His love.
As a pioneering researcher, his scientific studies have opened new horizons in medical science.
St Lukas, as a man of great humility, who rejects the glory of the earth and the honors, considering his highest honor, the ministry of his hurt fellowmen.
The book is for children, but it can speak just as well at all ages. The illustration gives the best prominence to the text through the simple lines of the distinctive illustrator Spyros Gousis, who conveys the climate and images of the time.
Katerina Mouriki, an experienced author of many dozens of titles, has managed through the pages of her book to emerge the rare personality of the Saint, making readers partakers of a remarkable work that, while it is right to all, resembles a fairytale.
Christina Konstandoudaki Reviews Where am I from? by Elisavet Arkolaki
Where am I From is an amazing book with a touching story, narrated in a simple language yet so beautifully done. Children from different cultures and countries gather together, and they try as a team to solve the riddle “Where am I from?”. The final and “correct” answer to the question as an epilogue, made me tear up.
The illustrations of the book are something totally new in publishing as they are real graffiti/murals that the artist painted with spray paint on the walls of schools. So, this book has been created and spread all over schools. How beautiful is that?
As a kindergarten teacher, I’m sure my students will love it. In fact, it inspired me to organize activities in order to teach them about the different countries of the world and where we all come from.
About the author – Christina Konstandoudaki is from the island of Crete in Greece, she’s a kindergarten teacher and a dreamer. She likes to write all sorts of stories both for kids and grown-ups. She is a volunteer at summer camps for kids, and she has won awards for her stories. Two of her books, ‘To arhigio’ and ‘Bel Bechamel’, are published by Biblioscopio Books. Her life motto is to let kids be kids.
Andreas Adamopoulos reviews THE MAGIC JOURNEYS OF FREELY AND HIS TEAM By ROY THOMA, Illustration Daphne Sivetidis
A great idea. A different conception and approach to electricity. A narrative aimed at children aged 8-10 as the author mentions, presented in the form of a fairytale.
A wonderful idea by writer, Roy Thoma, who excited and elated, is in a hurry to talk about these things to young children. Children cannot be outside of these wondrous things.
So, she begins to write the book starring Free Electrons as Freely and his team. These electrons charged to act in accordance with their own laws make journeys
that look like magic. Physicists have been observing and understanding the “movements” and the laws of free electrons and Roy Thoma reveals to us the wonderful activities and performances of Freely and his team. Our writer undertakes to display all this in the children’s mental area.
Such magic tricks unlike the dragon tricks, fairies or witches, we can see them not in our sleep and our dreams but in our awake. Sometimes as lamps that illuminate our apartments and sometimes as stoves or refrigerators, heaters, ovens, TVs, radios and a whole bunch of other applications. Because however, the best thing is not to talk about a book but to read it, I let you flip through, be fascinated, this small and imaginative book. This book not only fascinates children but also inspires composer Loukas Adamopoulos
to create a self-titled musical fairytale for voice and 2 pianos based on the English text. The work has been recorded with the voice of soprano singer Alice Zafiri.
The book’s illustration by Daphne Sibetidis with tiny, smart and colorful images of reality on the one hand and the world of fantasy and fairy tale on the other hand.
Evi Tsitiridou reviews Ninian, The Adventures of a Happy Dwarf that became an unhappy Giant by Vissaria Zorba-Rammopoulou (Illustrator: Apostolis Ioannou, Publisher: SAITIS, Athens 2019)
The goodhearted Ninian, the Prince of Dwarfs, could live happily in his Kingdom because he got everything he could desire! But he didn’t like himself, so when he gets in love with Ipsipyli, the impressive Princess of the Giants, he gets depressed. He decides to change his appearance in any way, at all costs.
So, he starts a journey, an unbelievable adventure with many traps, dangers, and unexpected encountering. Ninian will make it happen to become tall, as he wishes, but he will gradually lose his friends, his laughter, even his heart. Will he be able to find and accept his true self? Will he get back the lost happiness and his beloved Princess?
Evie Petropoulou reviews The Unicorn and the White–The Battle by Eleni Vasileios (Illustrations: Eleni Vasiliou)
A book for children from 6 to 10 years old, The Unicorn and the White–The Battle, is the book I am reviewing for the first time in the Multicultural Children’s Book Day, 2020,
The Unicorn and the White–The Battle refers to a very sensitive issue and is a book of great importance. The author Eleni Vasiliou, Ελένη Βασιλείου, Αστερόσκονη, had the idea of writing a story that refers to a global issue, children’s cancer. A girl called White and her friend the Unicorn were called to save the children’s wishes, those attacked by a bad green dragon named Karkinos, Cancer.
The girl while traveling to the woods and to unknown places will find a friend that needs her help. She finds forgotten toys and children in a coma. All of sudden, she meets the green dragon named karkinos, cancer, along with her love, hope, her strong heart and faith she manages to win the green dragon, cancer and make him go away. So, the smile comes back to the children’s faces and the tree of wishes starts to grow, making fruits. The illustrations are so beautiful and make the reader follow this travel and make him forgot about reality. The writer launched a campaign and does book launches to all Greece visiting hospitals where children with cancer, get treatment. The net proceeds from the sale publications are going to be reused by organizations that provide assistance and support to children and families with cancer.
I suggest to all teachers to buy and present this book. I suggest that all libraries must have this book.
Check More about the writer and her amazing work here.
Roy Thoma reviews Beadboy and Titie written by Andreas Adamopoulos
This lovely children’s book written by the composer and pianist Andreas Adamopoulos is leading us to a dreamland which all of us would like to visit. The two children, Beadboy and Titie, the two main characters in the book, meet in a gallery which is the ideal place to travel to dreamland.
As they are attracted to each other at first sight, they feel so close together that despite the fact that the gallery is full of people, this crowd just vanishes and they are aware only of each other’s presence as if it’s just the two of them in the large gallery; each one a unique person separated from the other, still attached to each other.
As they stroll around the gallery, their imagination is excited by watching the paintings. Each painting makes them dream of adventures full of music, dancing, but also stars and bright spring sceneries where the light air is playing among green leaves carrying up to the sea the message of the two children have become friends to remain so for life. The two children inspired especially by paintings which are unusual and colorful set their thought-free assisted by their imagination. The snapshots 13 altogether in the book unfold 13 wonderful stories inspired by the paintings in the gallery.
As the paintings come in life in the children’s imagination, stories are built up carrying at times a special message, bringing back precious memories or just leading the two children to the magic world of beauty, friendship and love. The vivid and colorful illustrations by Christina Dimitropoulou are a major plus to this multifunctional children’s book. The book is accompanied by a CD with the original music written for the tale and played on the piano by Andreas Adamopoulos. The music has achieved the1st prize at the Panhellenic Competition on composition for piano dedicated to Manos Hatzidakis. The tale accompanied by the music was presented in a stage performance in Thessaloniki, Greece in the Conference Center of the National Bank of Greece in “Ladadika” as well as in the Apollo Municipal theater in Patras, Greece.
**A huge THANK YOU! to all our Greek book reviewers who participated in this unique project***
ONE MORE THING
Show some social media love while marketing your book (or an author you admire) in a creative and far-reaching way!
Multicultural Children’s Book Day Social Media Shout-Outs
Our Social Media Shout-Outs has escalated in popularity over the last few months because folks see that it an affordable way to show some online love to their own work, an author they admire, or a book they admire. MCBD Social Media Shout-Outs also acts as a fundraiser for this non-profit.
Multicultural Children’s Book Day Social Media Shout-Out =$25 (sale price good until 2/28/20)
Anyone with a PayPal account can gift an online “shout-out” to an author friend who has a kid’s or YA book with a diversity theme OR use it as an effective tool for their own book marketing and book promotion.
Using a custom image created by the MCBD Team, we will provide one share/post our Twitter feed (over 13.7K followers) on our Instagram Feed (over 10.500 followers), within our Multicultural Children’s Book Day Private Facebook Group (over 1500 Members) and our Facebook page (over 4K followers) as well.
That’s a LOT of eyeballs!
AND, right now, everyone has a chance to lock in a Social Media Shout Out at the $25 rate before the price goes up on March 1, 2020. (Purchasers have 30 days from the date of the Shout Out purchase to redeem their purchase).
GO HERE to get more details, see more samples of past Shout-Outs, and to purchase your own Social Media Shout Out to honor someone in the world of diverse books for kids and teens! #ReadYourWorld