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Girl of Kosovo

3.95  ·  Rating details ·  142 ratings  ·  23 reviews

A child's perspective on war.

In 1998 the Serb military intensifies its efforts to expel Albanians from Kosovo. Ethnic cleansing forces many families to seek safety in the surrounding hills and mountains. The Kosovo Liberation Army fights back guerrilla style, struggling for an independent Kosovo. Some Albanian villagers support the freedom fighters. Others fear that armed

Paperback, 128 pages
Published February 11th 2003 by Yearling (first published April 11th 2001)
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Average rating 3.95  · 
Rating details
 ·  142 ratings  ·  23 reviews

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Kaitlyn Burress
Jan 16, 2013 rated it it was amazing
This is my favorite book and I love it very much it is a wonderful historical fiction book by Alice Mead. It is 128 pages of wonderfulness called Girl of Kosovo. It is in 11 year old Zana Dogollis point of view. Zana has 3 brothers and 1 on the way. She has a loving mother and father, but because her home, Albania, is being attacked by Serbia her father and 2 youngest brothers are killed. She is left with her mom and 15 year old brother Illar. Her leg is hurt badly and is sent to a hospital. A ...more
Nov 09, 2017 rated it it was amazing
As an Albanian who was in the middle of this war while it happened and had family members executed in front of us its never easy to read something the brings back so much memories. I was 10years old back then. I remember vividly family members being slaughtered, women getting raped and killed even while pregnant. Small children massacred including the elderly. We would run one direction then the other. Hide here and there. Starve. Never understood how someone can kill another just because we ...more
Vicky Hunt
Sep 11, 2018 rated it really liked it
War Through the Eyes of a Child

"In war, everyone is an enemy."

Death, maiming, and survival in the remnants of family; a young girl recounts her experience of the Kosovo War of the late nineties. NATO stepped in with bombing to end the violence against the Kosovar Albanians, and an international presence was ushered into Kosovo. Of course, the NATO intervention is still controversial, but to me it is a good thing that modern civilized nations will intervene in genocide. I realize that many may
Darlene Foster
Mar 24, 2019 rated it really liked it
The damage war does to children and families, can be implausible. Unfortunately, the story of Zana and her family is one of many. Although it is a terrible time, eleven-year-old Zana still has hopes and thoughts that all children her age have. The story is written with honesty, and not sugar coated but told in a way young children will understand and relate to. It is about family, bravery, the kindness of strangers and friendship. A piece of history that children need to read about.
Jul 21, 2019 rated it liked it
Definitely brought this conflict to life in a realistic, yet age appropriate way.
Sep 27, 2017 rated it really liked it
Jan 08, 2020 rated it it was ok
This book didn't have enough content for me. It is a children's book on a serious subject that came off as shallow.
Oct 23, 2014 rated it really liked it
Because Kosovo is such a "new" country (7 years old), our library system doesn't have a juvenile non-fiction book which teaches about Kosovo and its culture and history. So I read this children's chapter book written at a 4th grade level, about a Kosovan girl in the 1990's when the Serbs were trying to get ethnic
Albanians out of Kosovo. I know there are 2 sides to every story, and this author (who has worked with humanitarian organizations in Kosovo and based this story on a child she met while
Jennifer Marie
Jul 24, 2008 rated it really liked it
I have to say the book is definitely engaging. I really do love the main characters voice, but one thing bothers me--it's almost all narrative. There's very little dialogue. Granted it's a hard story to tell with interaction and dialogue because it's all from this girls head, and she's "alone" most of the novel, but I just keep wanting more interaction.

I've still got 1/4 left to finish, but it's very poignant and also a learning experience. I've learned more than I thought I would--and not as if
Apr 01, 2013 rated it it was amazing
I actually liked this book. When I first picked it out I was only reading it for a book project not cause I wanted to. As I was reading it I actually started to like it. I wanted to read it more and more, and ended up getting so hooked I couldn't put it down. This books about a girl who lives in a village full if Serbians and shes an Albanian. Her family gets bombed, and her dad and father die on the scene, and her ankle is tore open by shards of glass and metal. She goes from hospital to ...more
Jul 17, 2012 rated it liked it
I'm not sure why, but this came slightly short of my expectations. Don't get me wrong, it was definitely informative and entertaining, and there are still some parts that really stuck with me. But, for some reason, I just thought I would enjoy it more. Maybe it was because I had to read it for school, maybe I just expect more out of most books than I should. Nonetheless, if you haven't read this yet, do so. The subject matter will really pull you in, and the plot keeps you entertained. You will ...more
Miss Amanda
gr 5-8 113 pgs

1999, rural Kosovo. 11 year old Zana remembers when she used to play with her best friend Lena. But now times have changed and that means that Zana, an Albanian, and Lena, a Serb, aren't allowed to be friends anymore. Life becomes even more difficult when their village is attacked. After her father and two of her brothers are killed and Zana is badly injured in an attack Zana struggles to not allow hate to fill her heart and have hope for the future.

A story of survival and healing.
The book dealt with a very difficult subject--namely, the ethnic persecution of Albanians by the Serbs in Kosovo during the 90's. It would definitely be for an older child, as there are some pretty brutal scenes. But if you wanted an older child to get a taste of this subject matter, or become aware of these events, it's a relatively quick read.
Dec 18, 2010 rated it liked it
The writing didn't stand out to me as all that impressive, BUT it was a very compelling and revealing story of the heartbreak the people of Kosovo experienced. Written from the perspective of a child, it is a story rooted in the cold realities of war.
Jun 12, 2008 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is a true story written as a girl but in real life it is a boy. a great book telling of truth what the world needs to learn from,may these atrocities stop someday God willing!
I will never forget !
Jul 12, 2012 rated it really liked it
This book is a good look at the Kosovo conflict through a young girls eyes. It was a little graphic for the audience it was written for. I'm not sure what age is right to read it. But When ready it was a good read and about a conflict a lot of is know little about.
Astecia P.
Jun 14, 2014 rated it it was amazing
meguras air mata.
alice mead sungguh pandai membawa suasana
Nov 26, 2008 rated it it was amazing
great book; civil war. You notice how bad war is when you're in the shoes of someone else. It does feel different when someone says war, although you're safe.
Quynh Anh
Mar 10, 2016 rated it it was amazing
It's a children's book but I really loved it. Putting aside political disputes, it was a great book with so much life and sadness.
Nabhan Rusydi
rated it really liked it
Aug 20, 2018
rated it really liked it
Jun 27, 2015
Egzonë Memetii
rated it liked it
Dec 27, 2012
Uci Febria
rated it liked it
Apr 29, 2010
rated it it was ok
Jun 27, 2011
Lori Weinmeister
rated it really liked it
Dec 28, 2017
rated it really liked it
Feb 11, 2011
rated it liked it
May 08, 2016
Leonora Salihu
rated it it was amazing
Oct 17, 2012
Christy Mardini
Apr 25, 2017 rated it it was amazing
VERY touching story, written from the main girl's perspective, Zana. Zana is an Albanian girl who becomes good friends with a Serb girl, Lena. During the war, Zana loses family members and goes through a hard time herself. She loses her father and brothers and needs to be going in and out of the hospital. Through it all, she never lost hope and stayed true to her friend, Lena.

I would definitely use this book in my classroom. This book can teach history, hardships, war, struggles, but more
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ALICE MEAD has written several books about children in war-ravaged societies, including Girl of Kosovo, an NCSS-CBC Notable Trade Book in the Field of Social Studies. She lives in Maine.
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