The story of a Palestinian family’s ties to the land, and how one young girl finds a way to care for her home, even as she says goodbye.
It’s 1967 in Nablus, Palestine.
Oraib loves the olive trees that grow outside the refugee camp where she lives. Each harvest, she and her mama pick the small fruits and she eagerly stomp stomp stomps on them to release their golden oil. Olives have always tied her family to the land, as Oraib learns from the stories Mama tells of a home before war.
But war has come to their door once more, forcing them to flee. Even as her family is uprooted, Oraib makes a solemn promise to her beloved olive trees. She will see to it that their legacy lives on for generations to come.
Debut author-illustrator Aya Ghanameh boldly paints a tale of bitterness, hope, and the power of believing in a free and thriving future.
About the Author
Aya Ghanameh is a Palestinian illustrator, writer, and designer from Amman, Jordan. Her work moves away from state-centric ways of thinking to center the voices of ordinary people in historical and political narratives. Her debut picture book, These Olive Trees, is inspired by the experiences of her family who cultivated her love of the land throughout her upbringing in exile. Having graduating from the Rhode Island School of Design, she is currently based in New York City where she overspends on food from Arab restaurants.
You can visit Aya online at ayaghanameh.com or follow her on Twitter @ayaghanameh.
Praise for These Olive Trees
"In this poignant yet child-appropriate perspective on warfare, Ghanameh’s hand-drawn illustrations full of green landscape and white tents bring to life the refugee experience. [...] A sorrowful tale of the impact of warfare, infused with hope."—Kirkus Reviews