Award-winning Israeli author, Uri
Orlev, was born Jerzy Henryk Orlowski in Warsaw, Poland. As a small child,
he survived the war years in the ghetto in Poland and eventually made his
way to Israel. His books are often autobiographical.
The jury members of the Hans Christian
Andersen Author Award, which was awarded to Orlev in 1996, said: “Uri Orlev’s
experience as a Jewish boy in war-torn Poland is the background of this
outstanding writer for children. Whether his stories are set in the Warsaw
ghetto or his new country Israel, he never loses the perspective of the
child he was. He writes at a high literary level, with integrity and humor,
in a way which is never sentimental, exhibiting the skill to say much in
few words. Uri Orlev shows how children can survive without bitterness in
harsh and terrible times.”
The Island on Bird Street is
an autobiographical work of Orlev’s years in the Warsaw Ghetto where he learned
how to survive under life threatening conditions.