You Are The Color
Authored by Rifk Ebeid, Illustrated by Noor Alshalabi, Edited by Hajera Khaja, Paperback, 38 pages
After a frightening expulsion from his homeland, Thaer's world is suddenly filled with a lot of darkness. You Are The Color is an evocative story about the Palestinian refugee experience during al-Nakba, or "The Catastrophe," of 1948. Follow Thaer as he discovers the power of art to transform grief into hope, and find out his secret to seeing color again. Here's a hint: just look inside.
"Another brilliant book to be read by children of all ages. Those of us who think of ourselves as grown-ups, it reconnects us with our child's heart and rekindles hope." - Mazin Qumsiyeh, Professor, Bethlehem University
"In You Are the Color, readers journey with young Thaer through devastating loss before capturing bright hope with the help of a kind teacher. Accompanied by Noor Alshalabi's gorgeous illustrations, Rifk Ebeid illuminates the effects of the Palestinian Nakba and its displacement on childhood, as well as the powerful resilience of young children." - Sahar Mustafah, author of The Beauty of Your Face, a 2020 Notable Book by the New York Times Book Review
"Rifk Ebeid's latest children book, You Are the Color, is heartbreaking and yet heartwarming. It is the story of innocence, struggle and hope. It is the story of all Palestinian refugees and their descendants in the last 75 years. It is a profound representation of the larger struggle of generations of Palestinians insisting to remember where they come from, and to remain committed to their mission in life, that of freedom and justice. Noor Alshalabi's drawings are stunning and convey the innocence and purity of the story in a powerful and effective way. You Are the Color is another great addition to the Palestinian children literature genre." - Ramzy Baroud, Palestinian Author and Journalist
"This children's book speaks straight into my heart! I wish I had this book when I was a little kid. It is such an important and also positive narrative for children to learn about the history of Palestine. I also love the illustrations and how the color theme changes along side the script and it's emotion." - Malak Mattar, Artist
About the Contributors
Rifk Ebeid is a Palestinian writer and human rights advocate. She currently works as a pediatric speech language pathologist. Ebeid has a JD from George Mason University, an MA in Human Rights Studies from Columbia University, and an MA in Speech-Language Pathology from the University of Northern Colorado. She began writing children's books to serve as on ongoing trust that teaches children about Palestinian history and inspires them to be proud of their identity and always fight in the cause of justice. You Are The Color is her second picture book following her successful debut children's book, Baba, What Does My Name Mean? A Journey To Palestine.
Noor Alshalabi is a Jordan-based Palestinian illustrator who started drawing ever since she learned how to hold a pencil. After getting her BA in Visual Arts and Design, she pursued her dream of turning her imagination into reality through children's books. You can always find Noor with a cup of coffee, curled up with a good book, watching movies, playing with her pet bird, spending time with a friend, or going for a hike. Nature is both her source of inspiration and relaxation.
Hajera Khaja is a Canadian writer, editor, and an online creative writing instructor with the Sarah Selecky Writing School. Her short stories have been published in literary magazines and journals, including Joyland, The Humber Literary Review, Pulp Literature, and elsewhere. She was longlisted for the 2019 Writers' Trust McClelland & Stewart Journey Prize. Hajera lives in Mississauga, Ontario, and is currently working on a short story collection. Learn more about her at hajerakhaja.com.