Jewish-Arab Relations
... books for kids and families

Alexander, Sue. Behold the Trees. 2001.
J Fiction ALE
Have you ever looked at the trees in your neighborhood and wondered about the history that has happened around them? Read about the history of Israel through the history of its trees. In beautiful language this book describes how the trees were cut down by war and neglect and how the land became a desert until a new people came and replanted the trees.
Almagor, Gila. Under the Domim Tree. 1995.
J Fiction ALM
Aviya, Yola, and Mira who live in Udim, a youth village on Israel’s coastal plain in 1953, must find a way to cope with the tragic things that happened to them and all the girls around them during World War II. Some of the girls know that they are orphans and others are still unsure if their families are dead or alive. These three girls become close friends as they help each other through whatever their lives bring.
Banks, Lynne Reid. Broken Bridge. 1994.
Jr. High Fiction BAN
The sequel to One More River, this is the continuing story of Leslie Shelby. It is now 25 years later and Leslie has two children, a sixteen year-old son named Nimrod, and a fourteen-year-old daughter named Nili. Nili is very excited that her Canadian cousin, Glen, is coming to stay with them at the kibbutz. Tragedy strikes the family and the country when Nili and Glen are attacked by two Arab men on their way from the airport. How will the family and the country deal with this tragedy?
Banks, Lynne Reid. One More River. 1992.
J Fiction BAN
Lesley, who is very content with her life in Canada, is shocked when her father announces that they are moving to Israel. She is even more shocked to hear that they are moving to a kibbutz near the Jordanian border. Lesley has a hard time adjusting to living with the other children and not her parents, losing her privacy, and the hard physical work of the kibbutz. It is not until the Six-Day War that Lesley begins to feel at home.
Bergman, Tamar. The Boy from Over There. 1988.
J Fiction BER
Rina and Avramik are both waiting for news of a missing parent while they live on a kibbutz in Israel right after World War II. The other children at the kibbutz think Rina and Avramik are in denial. Because of this there is a lot of tension between the children of the kibbutz and these two children. Are Rina and Avramik’s parents alive?
Carmi, Daniella. Samir and Yonaton. 2000.
J Fiction CAR
Samir, a Palestinian boy, and Yonaton an Israeli boy, find themselves together in an Israeli hospital room. Samir is in for surgery on his knee and finds all the different things about this hospital and the Jewish children in it interesting. Life in the hospital is very different from Samir’s regular life. Yonaton begins to speak to Samir at night and they slowly become friends. Yonaton is interested in the stars and planets and shares some of his knowledge with Samir. They travel to Mars together one night and this helps Samir come to a new understanding about his brother’s death.
Clinton, Cathryn. A Stone in My Hand. 2002.
Jr. High Fiction CLI
Eleven-year-old Malaak is worried. Her father left Gaza city to look for work in Israel a month ago and has not returned. She is struggling not to give into the idea that maybe he is in prison. She is so sad that she talks very little and it is usually to her dove, Abdo. She is also worried about her brother who has become friends with some radicals. As the tension in the country mounts, can Malaak find a way to rise above the violence that is all around her?
da Costa, Deborah. Snow in Jerusalem. 2001.
Avi lives in the Jewish quarter of Jerusalem. Hamudi lives in the Muslim quarter of the city. They have never been to each other’s neighborhood. They do not know each other and are not aware that they are both taking care of the same stray cat. Read what happens when they meet each other and find out what they have in common. Can two boys from two different worlds be friends? Can it snow in Jerusalem?
Elmer, Robert. Promise of Zion Series. 2001.
Jr. High Series PBK
Dov is in search of his family. They were separated during World War II. His mother had told him she’d come back for him and they would go to Jerusalem. Here he is in Jerusalem in 1947. He came here thinking his family might have gone on ahead of him. Emily is a spoiled, only child of a British major. She has never felt close to or part of the struggle of the people who live in Palestine. Now she will have to find a way to deal with what she is about to face.
Feder, Harriet. Mystery of the Kaifeng Scroll: A Vivi Hartman Adventure. 1995.
Jr. High Fiction FED
Vivi has reluctantly agreed to visit her mother in Turkey. She wishes that her mother would come see her. However her father points out that a promise is a promise so off Vivi goes. When she arrives she finds that her mother is not there to meet her. Now stranded in a foreign country, Vivi must rely on her mother’s star pupil Shari. Shari is an Arab girl and Vivi is unsure about befriending her. When she overhears something about an ancient scroll, Vivi knows this might get dangerous. Can Vivi trust Shari to help find out what happened to her mother?
Kennedy, Richard. The Boxcar at the Center of the Universe. 1982.
J Fiction KEN
A boy on a subway train meets a man who claims to be Ali Azizi Abdurrahman Hafiz and tells the boy some unbelievable tales about his search for the center of the universe. As the boy listens he realizes that this man’s stories can help him with his own journey of self discovery.
Levine, Anna. Running on Eggs. 1999.
Jr. High Fiction LEV
Karen and Yasmine live on the same mountain top but in two different worlds. Karen lives on an Israeli kibbutz and Yasmine lives in a nearby Arab village. They find themselves on the same track team and start training together. They know that their communities would not like it if they were friends, but they find that they have a lot in common and Karen becomes dependent on Yasmine for coaching. Can these two girls remain friends even when people find out about their friendship?
Matas, Carol. The Garden. 1997.
J Fiction MAT
Ruth is a survivor. She has made it through a Nazi concentration camp and found her way out of Poland and into Palestine. Now she has to start a new life on a kibbutz. The activity that gives her the most peace is working her garden. Around her things are not so peaceful. The United Nations is planning for a vote that would separate Palestine; one land for the Arabs and one for the Jews. The political situation is very tense. As the Israeli War of Independence grows nearer, Ruth fights to keep the little peace she has.
Nye, Naomi Shihab. Habibi. 1997.
Jr. High Fiction NYE
When Liyana’s father tells her that the family is moving from St. Louis to Jerusalem near the Arab village where her father was born she is unsure about what that move will mean for her. She is nervous about living near her grandmother whom she has never met. She must find a comfortable place in this new world.
Orlev, Uri. Lydia Queen of Palestine. 1993.
J Fiction ORL
Lydia’s mother has sent her off to a children’s kibbutz in Palestine to escape the Nazis in Romania. How will she cope with being away from her mother, being in a new place, and with all the new children around her?