Picture Book Review: Nour’s Secret Library

Nour's Secret Library by Wafa' Tarnowska

Nour’s Secret Library
by Wafa’ Tarnowska, Vali Mintzi (Illustrator)

4 out of 5 stars

Nour and her cousin Amir must hide in the basement with their family while the Syrian civil war rages through their beloved city of Damascus. In the rubble of abandoned buildings, Amir finds books that he brings home. Amir and Nour collect so many books that they open their own secret library for the civilians of the city to enjoy. Their neighbors begin to rescue books from the war-torn streets as well, and soon they have a flourishing library. In the middle of destruction, they create something beautiful!

This was such touching and emotional story! I loved the way the story puts you right into Nour’s shoes, showing her love for her family and her love for books. You really get a sense of the terror and uncertainty of living in the middle of a war. But there is also hope and light!

This book has many positive messages about the foolishness of war, and the strength of family love. Books are so important for binding people together, for finding hope in difficult times, and for bringing beauty into the world. I loved the hopeful and wise messages of this story!

The illustrations are really beautiful. The pages show vibrant colors for Nour and her family and their lovely books, but there are grays and dark shadows for the aftermath of the war. I loved the way the illustrations reflect the emotions of the story!

Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for a free and honest review. All the opinions stated here are my own true thoughts, and are not influenced by anyone.

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