The Bird Words tells the tale of langauge learning from the perspective of a little girl arriving in a new country. To this little girl, words and language are like birds, flying around and confusing her. With the help of her teacher she learns to read. She also discovers how learning a new language can make us feel at home in a new place.
The Bird Words was first published in November 2016.
The Cat's Family
Kitabna's fifth book, and the second was a commission from the AMAR Foundation, The Starling's Visit tells the tale of Iman, who discovers the migratory patterns of starlings when she arrives in a refugee camp close to Erbil. One starling is left behind when his friends fly home again, but luckily Iman is there to help him.
The Starling's Visit was first published in September 2015.
Kitabna's fourth book was an exciting commission from the AMAR Foundation, who asked Helen to write two new Kitabna books for their beneficiaries in Iraqi Kurdistan. AMAR meets the needs of internally displaced children affected by the sectarian violence in Iraq and Syria. The Lake Where Frogs Lived and The Starling's Visit are stories that focus on relationship building between formerly isolated communities now living side by side in refugee camps in the Erbil region. The books are trilingual: written in Kurdish Sorani, formal Arabic and English.
The Lake Where Frogs Lived is a tale about a lake near to Erbil, where frogs live when refugees arrive there to be settled. The frogs meet new friends, Berivan and Haifa, and try their best to help people fit in and learn to laugh again.
The Lake Where Frogs Lived was first published in September 2015.
Kitabna's third book, عَائِلَةُ الْقِطّ The Cat's Family, tells the tale of Noor, a cat rescued from the rubble of a city devastated by war. He is rescued by Bilal and his family, and go with them on their long journey in search of a new home. On the way, he finds a home to call his own.
The Cat's Family was first published in April 2015.
دەریاچەی بۆقەكانسەردانی ریشۆڵەکە
زرْزورٌ فِي المُخيمِ
The Starling’s Visit
البُحَيرةُ التِي عَاشَتْ فِيها الضَّفَادِعُ
The Lake Where Frogs Lived
Who do we print with?
We print with:
Arab Printing Press (APP) in Beirut, Lebanon.
Cacon Print in Sulaymaniyah, Iraq.
Saxoprint in London, UK.
The Giant Watermelon
Kitabna's second book, قِصَصُ إِسْرَاءَ Esraa's Stories, tells the tale of Esraa, a girl who loves to write stories. One day Esraa chooses to write about what everyone misses most from Syria in the camp and her stories go on an unexpected adventure.
Esraa's Stories was first published in February 2015.
Kitabna's first book, الْبِطِّيخَةُ الْعِمْلاقَةُ The Giant Watermelon, was written in the summer of 2014 following visits to camps in the Beqaa Valley, eastern Lebanon. The children asked Helen, bitakli basineh? (do you eat cat?) to make sure they were safe before taking her to see the camp cat. They also showed her the vegetable patch, where two watermelons were growing.
The Giant Watermelon tells the tale of Tarik, Sana and Sarah, three friends in charge of the camp vegetable patch. When something strange happens to one of the watermelons, Tarik must choose what to do.
The Giant Watermelon was first published in October 2014.