The Peacock

  • Illustrated By: Jaimie MacGibbon
  • Pages:96
  • Publisher:Orca Book Publishers
  • Series: Orca Echoes
  • Themes:World War II, refugees, family, Jewish history, generosity
  • Available:02/13/2024
  • Lexile:740L
  • Fountas & Pinnell Text Level Gradient:P

What do you do about a peacock in your backyard?

World War II has just ended and Barbara is waiting for things to get back to normal. But, instead, her father has to travel to Europe, leaving their Toronto home behind. His company has a plan to give Jewish refugees jobs as tailors so they can immigrate to Canada with their families. So Barbara gets left with her rabble-rousing brothers and her melancholy mother...and a peacock that has just moved into the backyard. Her mother won't go near it, and it clearly needs some other place to call home. The zoo says they don't have room for another animal, but they can't tell her how many they have. So what's one more? Barbara comes up with a plan involving peanut butter cookies and her trusty wagon to bring the peacock to a safe home at the zoo—before winter hits.

Based on the true story of the author's own grandfather, Sam Posluns, who, along with several other Jewish business leaders, created the "Garment Workers' Scheme" (aka The Tailor Project). This was a way of unlocking Canada’s harsh immigration laws and providing many refugees with a safer and happier future.

“Told in short and digestible chapters, this chapter book packs a narrative punch…and provides a glimpse into a less well-known historical moment for readers to learn about.”

– Booklist

“A touching and educational illustrated chapter book that highlights empathy, resourcefulness, and the importance of community. An enriching addition to library bookshelves.”

– School Library Journal

Download the The Peacock Glossary.