Books·Canadian

The Sour Cherry Tree by Naseem Hrab, illustrated by Nahid Kazemi

Governor General's Literary Award for young people's literature — illustrated books winner.

Governor General's Literary Award for young people's literature — illustrated books winner

After her grandfather's death, a young girl wanders through his house. As she tours each room, the objects she discovers stir memories of her grandfather—her baba bozorg. His closet full of clothes reminds her of the mints he kept in his pockets. His favorite teacup conjures thoughts of the fig cookies he would offer her. The curtains in the living room bring up memories of hide-and-seek games and the special relationship that she and her baba bozorg shared, even though they spoke different languages.

The Sour Cherry Tree is an authentic look at death and loss centred on the experiences of a child, both strikingly whimsical and matter-of-fact. Drawing on the Iranian-Canadian author's childhood memories, this tender meditation on grief, love, and memory is at once culturally specific and universally relatable.(From Owlkids) 

The Sour Cherry Tree won the 2022 Governor General's Literary Award for young people's literature — illustrated books.

Naseem Hrab is a Toronto-based writer and storyteller. She is also the author of Ira Crumb Makes a Pretty Good Friend and Ira Crumb Feels the Feelings. Her picture book Weekend Dad was a finalist for the 2020 Governor General's Literary Prize for young people's literature — illustrated books.

Nahid Kazemi is an artist, illustrator, graphic designer and author from Montreal. Her other books include I'm Glad That You're Happy, The Orange House and Over the Rooftops, Under the Moon by JonArno Lawson.

From the book

A book page from The Sour Cherry Tree by Naseem Hrab, illustrated by Nahid Kazemi. (Owlkids)

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