Street of Storytellers

Street of Storytellers


Doug Wilhelm
September 10, 2019

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Additional Information:

Release Date: September 10, 2019
ISBN: 978-1-5786901-6-9
LCCN: 2018968619
Teacher Discount: A discount of 20% is available for orders of 10 or more copies. Use discount code STORYTELLERS20.
Booksellers and Libraries: Order Here.


Luke is an American kid, in a place he doesn’t understand.

In this multicultural thriller, a teenager who loves music is angry with his father, blaming his parents’ divorce on his dad’s obsession with finishing a book about a lost ancient civilization in a dangerous part of Asia. But his father badly wants his son to understand — so he brings Luke to Peshawar, an age-old crossroads city in Pakistan’s Northwest Frontier. To punish his dad, Luke refuses to learn anything about the project — and instead he is drawn into the strange, intriguing Old City, where a violent new extremism is on the rise.

Luke is dazzled by the beautiful Danisha, but they can’t ever be seen together. He’s recruited by her brother to assist the jihadis — but he also bonds with Yusuf, an Afghan refugee who knows what could happen. Then there are the musicians Luke befriends, and a mysterious Sufi teacher who opens his eyes.

Street of Storytellers is about three families across two cultures. It’s about an ancient true story the world has almost forgotten. And it’s about thinking for yourself — even when that puts your life at risk.


Street of Storytellers is a storytelling delight, following the journey of a teenage American boy into the teeming bazaars of Pakistan and a world of musicians, refugees, scholars and the religious fanatics who will become the followers of Osama bin Laden. The story is rich in detail and suspense. Young Luke, resentful of his father’s research project and unwilling to learn about the culture around him, ends up learning more than he could ever have expected.”
David Moats, Pulitzer-prize winning journalist


“Street of Storytellers is a vivid and layered novel of family angst, clashing cultures, navigating friendships, first love, and wisdom versus extremism amid frightening political and religious tensions in 1984 Pakistan -- as told by Luke, a 15-year-old American who did not want to be there. Wilhelm skillfully weaves history into dramatic youth fiction that is both a personal story and a perspective on world events today.”
Deborah Rodriguez, author of Kabul Beauty School and The Little Coffee Shop of Kabul


“An exciting adventure story of a young American boy in a historic but dangerous part of our world.”
Timeri N. Murari, author of The Taliban Cricket Club


“Wilhelm, a former journalist who traveled to Pakistan to interview young people in the 1980s, offers an American teenager's perspective on a pivotal moment in modern world history. Main character Luke explores his own evolving thoughts about history, religion, friendship, family (and music) as he faces tough choices and harsh realities against a backdrop of growing tensions in Peshawar during the Afghan War. A complex and thought-provoking YA novel. -- S. S. Taylor, author of The Expeditioners series


“An entertaining, thoughtful look at a complicated historical, religious, artistic, and cultural crossroads.”
—Kirkus Reviews,
read the full review here.


Doug Wilhelm is a full-time writer and editor in Weybridge, Vermont. His 16 published books for young readers include The Revealers (FSG 2003, Macmillan/Square Fish ’11), which has been the focus of reading-and-discussion projects in well over 1,000 middle schools and continues to be a perennial choice for gradewide and all-school reads across the country. A production of the play version of The Revealers by the National Children’s Theatre of South Africa was nominated for the 2015 Naledi Award, that country’s top theatrical honor. Doug has visited over 100 schools across the U.S., connects readily with young readers, and maintains an active email list of over 600 school teachers, librarians, administrators and other educators. His website,, is a resource center for working with his novels, and has averaged as much as 4,000 hits per day.

Visit Doug’s website:


  • Waterbury, Vt., Wednesday, Oct. 9th, 6pm, Bridgeside Books, 29 Stowe Street.

  • Middlebury, Vt., Sunday, Oct. 20th, 4-6pm, Champlain Valley Unitarian-Universalist Church, 2 Duane Court: Reading, Q&A, Book Signing, with The Vermont Bookshop selling books.


Addison Independent, Oct. 14, 2019. Doug Wilhelm's book is 38 years in the making. “As a young adult novelist, Doug Wilhelm knows that if you don’t pull the reader in right away, ‘you’re done.’ Nothing is different about the way he starts his 17th and newest book, ‘Street of Storytellers.,’….Read the full article here.