Picture books can be for young and old and help us see hope in the midst of chaos. John McCutcheon’s story Flowers for Sarajevo (Peachtree, $19.95), illustrated by Kristy Caldwell, leaves you feeling both the impact of war and the strength of the human spirit; an enclosed CD with music by cellist Vadro Smailovic completes the package. The Banana-Leaf Ball (Kids Can, $18.95) by Katie Smith Milway also tells of all-too-real violence through the eyes of a child. After fleeing his native Burundi, Deo is living alone in a refugee camp in Tanzania when he goes from being bullied to being teammates with his rival. Shane Evans’s illustrations evoke a full range of emotions, from fear when Deo initially has to flee his home, to joy when play and friendship ultimately triumph. Ages 7-10.