Today we’re thrilled to reveal the cover for Homeland: My Father Dreams of Palestine by Hannah Moushabeck, illustrated by Reem Madooh! The jacket was designed by Mariam Quraishi. The book will be released on March 28, 2023 by Chronicle Books. Preorder it here or here. Read on for an exclusive author’s note and sneak peek inside the book!
As bedtime approaches, three young girls eagerly await the return of their father, who tells them stories of a faraway homeland—of Palestine. Through their father’s memories, the Old City of Jerusalem comes to life: the sounds of juice vendors beating rhythms with brass cups, the smell of argileh drifting through windows, and the sight of doves flapping their wings toward home. These daughters of the diaspora feel love for a place they have never been, a home they cannot visit. But, as their father’s story comes to an end, they know that through his memories they will always return.
A Palestinian family celebrates the stories of their homeland in this moving autobiographical picture book debut by Hannah Moushabeck. With heartfelt illustrations by Reem Madooh, Homeland: My Father Dreams of Palestine is a love letter to home, to family, and to the persisting hope of a people, which transcends borders.
A word from the author:
My sisters and I grew up hearing stories of Palestine from our many family members. As children, the stories told to us before bed were better than any storybook. In the same night, we would hear a tale of a princess in a magical kingdom, and then we would learn about our father as a boy, playing tricks on his elderly neighbors, stealing sweets from his teta’s kitchen…and fart jokes. Always fart jokes! Now it’s hard to remember which were fairy tales and which were true, as the stories blend together, and our homeland feels more and more like a magical place. Sometimes stories were told to my mother by my father’s mother, a sacred bond between women, secrets meant to be passed like recipes to her daughters. Someday I hope to pass these stories on to my own children along with my nieces and nephews.
My family, like millions of others, were forced from our homeland and scattered across the world, unable to return. I have relatives in Chile, Peru, Canada, Europe, Jordan, Lebanon, and the United States. We speak different languages. We celebrate different holidays. We eat different foods. But one thing we all share: stories of our homeland.
This book is a gift to my ancestors. A reminder to preserve and celebrate your culture in the diaspora. A celebration of a homeland where I have never been. And an ode to the power of storytelling. I hope you enjoy it. — Hannah Moushabeck
Hannah Moushabeck is a second-generation Palestinian American author, editor, and book marketer who was raised in a family of publishers and booksellers in Western Massachusetts and England. Born in Brooklyn into Interlink Publishing, a family-run independent publishing house, she learned the power of literature at a young age. She is the author of Homeland: My Father Dreams of Palestine (Chronicle Books, March 2023). She lives in Amherst, Massachusetts on the homelands of the Pocumtuc and Nipmuc Nations.
Reem Madooh is an illustrator from Kuwait with an MA in Children’s Book Illustration. She is an avid picture book collector and loves narrative storytelling and incorporating a dreamlike atmosphere into her art. As a child, she enjoyed listening to stories of the old days from her parents and grandparents. She also loves za’atar and makes sure to have some every day. Homeland: My Father Dreams of Palestine is her first picture book. She lives in Kuwait. http://www.reemadooh.com/