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The Librarian of Basra: A True Story from…

The Librarian of Basra: A True Story from Iraq

by Jeanette Winter

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8357316,402 (4.19)7



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Showing 1-5 of 72 (next | show all)
This is a beautifully illustrated story about Alia Muhammad Baker, the librarian of Basra, Iraq during the 2003 invasion of Iraq. When rumors of the invasion begins, Alia becomes worried about the safety of the books in her library and asks the governor for permission to move them to a safe place but he refuses. So she takes matters into her own hands and begins moving the books to her own home. With the help of neighbors Alia is able to save 70% of the library's collection before it was burned down 9 days after the Iraqi invasion reached Basra. This book provides young readers with a glimpse of the day-to-day life of Iraqi residents during the invasion, as well as the importance of library collections and the need to protect books as much as possible.

I love the colorful illustrations that emphasize both the joy of literature and the fear and danger Iraqis experienced during the invasion. The text is simple and sparse, providing just enough information to convey the heart of the message of the book. The expressive illustrations provide the rest. I also appreciated that the book is separated into three sections denoted by the background color of the page. The first section, with a yellow background, is about the lead-up to the invasion arriving in Basra. The second second, with a purple background, is about the actual invasion in Basra. The final section, with a blue background, is about what happens once the invasion moves beyond Basra. It helps to convey the shift in tone as Alia deals with each successive stage of the invasion. ( )
  irasobrietate | Jun 4, 2019 |
True story of Iraq. Librarian in Iraq protect books from war 2003.
  yumiheath | May 30, 2019 |
This book is about a librarian during the Iraq War. She has a lot of books that she was afraid to lose so she began the process of moving them. This book puts a perspective on the Iraq war that most people can not relate to. ( )
  CodyNoto | Mar 18, 2019 |
"The Librarian of Basra" took place during the Iraq War. A librarian had 30,000 books. She loved her books very very much and she new that the war would cause them to become destroyed. So in secret she moved her books to her business and then to her home. I made the connection that in "Hana's Suitcase" her home was ceased and searched for valuables. In the end of the book, a soldier came to the restaurant ready to search it until Anis showed up with a gun at the door. War is a very trying time, both families that I made a connection with live's changed in a second. Unlike Hana, the librarian was able to save her books, and they were not destroyed in the war.

The book wasn't a favorite of mine. I can't even really say that I care for the illustrations in the books either. I did enjoy the message that I received from the book which is even though there life may not be what you want it to be in the moment, there will still something beautiful around you to cherish (the books). ( )
  atassin | Oct 30, 2018 |
In this book, Alia is the librarian of the big library in Basra, Iraq during the time the Iraq war breaks out. She recruits some neighbors to help her save many of the books from the library as bombs are being dropped on Basra and eventually her library. She hopes to continue to keep the books safe and dreams of a new library. ( )
  jharding16 | Apr 10, 2018 |
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Book description
Alia Muhammad Baker, a librarian in Basra, Iraq, is the focus of this 2003 true story as she saves the books from her library before it is burned during the Iraq war. When she asks the governor for safe storage of the books, and it is denied, she is aided by her community in protecting the books from destruction. Although appearing as a book for elementary level, this beautifully told and illustrated story will be appreciated by readers of all levels.
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Alia Muhammad Baker is a librarian in Basra, Iraq. For fourteen years, her library has been a meeting place for those who love books. Until now. Now war has come, and Alia fears that the library--along with the thirty thousand books within it--will be destroyed forever. In a war-stricken country where civilians--especially women--have little power, this true story about a librarian's struggle to save her community's priceless collection of books reminds us all how, throughout the world, the love of literature and the respect for knowledge know no boundaries.… (more)

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