By Emily Iddings, Graphic Designer, Communications Coordinator

When I was a little, nothing captured my imagination like a good book!  I would read my favorites over and over again until I could tell their story without even looking at the words. I would escape to far-off lands, exploring forests and oceans and defeating pirates. I especially loved learning about cultures that were different from my own.
Thanks to this love of reading, I am always on the lookout for good books to read to the kids in my life. Here are some of the best children’s books I’ve found that take place in Haiti…check these out!

1. Tap-Tap
By Karen Lynn Williams, Illustrated by Catherine Stock

If you’re looking for a book that has beautiful illustrations and a heartwarming story, look no further!  The beautiful watercolor illustrations bring to life the story of Sasifi, a young girl who desperately wants to ride a tap-tap, a brightly colored truck that carries passengers and their belongings in Haiti.

2. Janjak and Freda Go to the Iron Market
By Elizabeth J. Turnbull, Illustrated by Mark Jones

Full of bright colors and adventure, Janjak and Freda Go to the Iron Market tells a story that will leave children and adults alike dreaming up their next adventure. Written in both English and Creole, this book comes with a pronunciation guide as well as a brief history of the Iron Market.

3. I Dream Too/Mwen Reve
By Maude Heurtelou

I Dream Too is also bilingual (English/Creole)  and tells a story about a young girl nurturing her dream.  It is part of the Good Citizen Collection for Pre-K students.

4. Selavi, That is Life: A Haitian Story of Hope
By Youme Landowne

Selavi, That is Life is the true story of Selavi, a homeless child in Haiti who is befriended by other street children. This story of hope is told not only through beautiful illustrations, but also supplemented with photographs of children working and playing together.

5. Jenika Sings for Freedom
By The Restavek Freedom Writers, Illustrated by Emily Iddings

This list wouldn’t be complete without the two wonderful books written by the young women in our Transitional Home!  Creating these books gave the girls the opportunity to reshape the stories of their own lives with power and possibility and hope.  Jenika Sings for Freedom aims to raise awareness about the inhumanity and injustice of child slavery in Haiti through the story of one girl who never gave up hope.

6. Stand Up for Soraya
By The Restavek Freedom Writers, Illustrated by Emily Iddings

Also written by our very own Restavek Freedom Writers, this book tells the story of Soraya, a young girl who feels invisible in her father and step-mother’s house.  That is, until she meets a little girl named Anita, whose courage and sense of justice change the course of Soraya’s life.

Do you have a favorite children’s book about Haiti? Let us know!