This beautiful graphic-novel adaptation of The Breadwinner animated film tells the story of eleven-year-old Parvana who must disguise herself as a boy to support her family during the Taliban’s rule in Afghanistan.
Parvana lives with her family in one room of a bombed-out apartment building in Kabul, Afghanistan’s capital city. Parvana’s father — a history teacher until his school was bombed and his health destroyed — works from a blanket on the ground in the marketplace, reading letters for people who cannot read or write. One day, he is arrested for having forbidden books, and the family is left without someone who can earn money or even shop for food.
As conditions for the family grow desperate, only one solution emerges. Forbidden to earn money as a girl, Parvana must transform herself into a boy, and become the breadwinner.
Readers will want to linger over this powerful graphic novel with its striking art and inspiring story.
Deborah Ellis is best known for her Breadwinner series, which has been published in twenty-five languages and has earned more than $1 million in royalties to benefit Canadian Women for Women in Afghanistan and Street Kids International. She has won the Jane Addams Children’s Book Award, the University of California’s Middle East Book Award, the Governor General’s Award, the Ruth Schwartz Award, Sweden’s Peter Pan Prize, and the Vicky Metcalf Award for a Body of Work. She has received the Ontario Library Association’s President’s Award for Exceptional Achievement, and she has been named to the Order of Canada.
The Breadwinner film was produced by Aircraft Pictures, Cartoon Saloon and Melusine Productions.
Aircraft Pictures is an independent scripted content production company creating quality entertainment for a worldwide audience, ranging from independent feature films to high-end television series. Aircraft has offices in Toronto and Los Angeles.
Cartoon Saloon is a two-time Academy Award nominee for the 2010 film The Secret of Kells and 2014’s Song of the Sea. The studio was formed in 1999 by Paul Young, Tomm Moore and Nora Twomey, and is based in Kilkenny, Ireland.
Melusine Productions is based in Luxembourg. They specialize in animated films and documentaries. Recent films include the award-winning Song of the Sea and Ernest & Celestine
Nora Twomey is co-founder and creative director of Cartoon Saloon, and was co-director of their Oscar® nominated animated feature The Secret of Kells and head of story on the follow-up film, the Oscar® nominated Song of the Sea. Nora is the director of The Breadwinner, an animated feature film adaptation of Deborah Ellis’s best-selling children’s novel.
Middle East Book Award
Sweden’s Peter Pan Prize
Baia delle Favole Prize
Rebecca Caudill Young Reader’s Award
Rocky Mountain Book Award, finalist
YALSA Popular Paperbacks for Young Adults
"All girls [should read] The Breadwinner by Deborah Ellis." — Malala Yousafzai, New York Times
“A great kids’ book … a graphic geopolitical brief that’s also a girl-power parable.” —Newsweek
“… an exceptional story that enlightens the reader about circumstances beyond comprehension and helps students understand that all of us in this global community share the same hopes, dreams, and fears.” —Resource Links
“[The books in the Breadwinner series] are terrifying indictments of what war can bring to children and a powerful testament to the ingenuity and strength of young people in times of terror.” —Book Links
“… a book … about the hard times — and the courage — of Afghan children.” —Washington Post