Forced to take shelter when their Syrian city is plagued with bombings, young Nour and her cousin begin to bravely build a secret underground library. Based on the author's own life experience and inspired by a true story, Nour's Secret Library is about the power of books to heal, transport and create safe spaces during difficult times. Illustrations by Romanian artist Vali Mintzi superimpose the colorful world the children construct over black-and-white charcoal depictions of the battered city.
Wafa' Tarnowska is an award-winning writer, translator and storyteller. She was born in Lebanon and has worked and lived in several countries from India, to Australia, to the UAE as well as Cyprus and Lebanon. She currently lives between the UK and Poland, writing, translating books and documentaries and offering storytelling sessions in English and Arabic. Wafa' sees herself as a cultural bridge between East and West, and has also written the award-winning The Arabian Nights for Barefoot Books.Vali Mintzi was born in Romania and studied at the prestigious Bezalel Academy in Jerusalem. She works as an illustrator and graphic editor for the children's art magazine Einayim. In 2012 she was awarded The Israel Museum Ben-Yitzhak Award for the Illustration of a Children's Book. Her vibrant and evocative style is influenced by painters such as Bonnard, Hockney and Matisse. She has also illustrated The Girl with a Brave Heart for Barefoot Books.