About the Author

Deborah Ellis

Deborah Ellis is the internationally acclaimed author of more than twenty books for children, including The Breadwinner Trilogy; The Heaven Shop; Lunch With Lenin; Children of War: Voices of Iraqi Refugees; and Our Stories, Our Songs: African Children Talk About AIDS. She has won many national and international awards for her books, including the Governor General’s Award, the Vicky Metcalf Award, Sweden’s Peter Pan Prize, the Jane Addams Children’s Book Award, and the Children’s Africana Book Award Honor Book for Older Readers.Deborah knew she wanted to be a writer at the age of 11 or 12. Growing up in Paris, Ontario, she loved reading about big cities like New York. In high school, Deborah joined the Peace Movement, playing anti-Nuclear War movies at her school. Since then Deborah has become a peace activist, humanitarian and philanthropist, donating almost all of the royalties from her books to communities in need in Asia and Africa. Heavily involved with Women for Women in Afghanistan, Deborah has helped build women’s centers and schools, giving children education and finding work for women.In 2006, Deborah was named to the Order of Ontario. She now lives in Simcoe, Ontario.

Books by this Author
El pan de la guerra

El pan de la guerra

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Kids of Kabul

Kids of Kabul

Living Bravely through a Never-ending War
edition:eBook
also available: Paperback Hardcover
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Looks Like Daylight

Looks Like Daylight

Voices Of Indigenous Kids
edition:Hardcover
also available: Paperback eBook
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My Story Starts Here

My Story Starts Here

Voices of Young Offenders
edition:eBook
also available: Paperback
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Excerpt

Ian, 17

My trouble with the law started in grade four. Me and some friends started fires in our town.

There were some caves in the areas I was living. We liked to explore the caves and we thought it would be great to have campfires there. We gathered up some branches off dead trees and made a fire and it was fine.

We might have been okay if we’d left it there. I mean, we should have known more about fire safety, but I don’t think we were bothering anybody. But we decided to keep building fires and to build bigger ones.

It’s against the law to start fires like that. People caught on that it was us because we needed paper to build these fires. We would go to those free-newspaper and free-magazine stands and empty these out and run down the street with armloads of these things. It was a small town. People knew us, got to wondering what we were doing, put two and two together and called the police...

I got into more serious trouble in grade nine. I didn’t like school and skipped it all the time. This one day we skipped classes the whole day then came back into the school at the end of the day to catch the school bus home. We were walking through the halls, goofing around, and we walked right into the principal. We were high. The principal searched us, found our joints and rolling papers. ...

That principal never liked me. The police didn’t charge us but the principal suspended us — two months! — for just that little bit of drugs. After the suspension was over, he said he didn’t want us back in his school.

My parents split up when I was young. It was not a good break-up. Lots of yelling and fighting. It was bad. I went with Mom but she had a breakdown so I couldn’t stay with her. Dad couldn’t take me. He was breaking too under the strain of everything. He didn’t know how to care for me, or maybe he knew how but knew that he couldn’t, or maybe he just didn’t want to....

When I was sixteen I got charged with B and E. I got put on probation for a year and I had to spend a week in Open Custody. Open Custody was not really open because I couldn’t leave. They set the bedtime, and it was very early. You couldn’t use knives. They had very specific rules and if you broke one of those rules they wouldn’t let you play video games or go outside.

I did a lot more B and E’s than the one I was charged with. They were all about getting me money for weed. Me and my friends would walk around town looking for easy places to get into, going into cars that weren’t locked or shops or houses or whatever. I never thought I would get caught...

I’ve been in five foster homes. My foster mom, the one I have now, says I can stay with her even after I turn eighteen. I have a job now at a place that replaces car windshields and I like doing that. Maybe they’ll keep me on.

I have this thing in my head that tells me that as soon as something good happens, it’s all going to get ruined. It’s hard not to give up on myself. I feel like there’s something deep inside me that won’t let me do anything good...

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Off to War

Off to War

Voices of Soldiers' Children
edition:Hardcover
also available: Paperback eBook
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Sit
Excerpt

“We would make perfect murderers,” said Sanu, who was one year older than Jafar...

“What are you talking about?” Jafar asked.

Sanu held up his hands and wiggled his fingers.

“No fingerprints!” he said, laughing.

They could laugh now, but when Jafar first started sanding, his fingers got so sore and bloody!

“Get one more drop of blood on one of my chairs, you little cockroach, and I’ll send you back to your family in a garbage sack!” Boss had yelled at him.

*

Oak Street was not the busiest street in town, but lots of people still walked down it, and they all looked at Bea, sitting by herself on a bench in the middle of a school day.

Bea didn’t worry about the old ladies. She had sat on this bench before on her days off and the old ladies left her alone...

The dangerous ones were the yoga ladies...

The yoga ladies were busybodies.

*

Mike hears the outer door of the Administrative Segregation pod shut and lock. He is all alone...

His eyes are wiped and his face is dry by the time he hears the Ag Seg door unlock again and the peep-hole covering in his own door slide open.

“You all right in there, 75293?”

Mike knows the voice of CO Jenson.

It is the voice of the devil.

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The Breadwinner Trilogy

The Breadwinner Trilogy

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also available: Paperback
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Three Wishes

Three Wishes

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also available: Paperback
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True Blue  

True Blue  

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We Want You To Know

We Want You To Know

Kids Talk About Bullying
edition:Paperback
also available: Hardcover eBook
tagged : bullying
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We Want You to Know

We Want You to Know

Kids Talk About Bullying
edition:Hardcover
also available: Paperback eBook
tagged : bullying
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Annaleise Carr

Annaleise Carr

How I Conquered Lake Ontario to Help Kids Battling Cancer
edition:Paperback
also available: eBook Hardcover
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