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Refugee Hardcover – July 25, 2017
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From School Library Journal
* "Gratz accomplishes a feat that is nothing short of brilliant, offering a skillfully wrought narrative laced with global and intergenerational reverberations that signal hope for the future. . . . Poignant, respectful, and historically accurate while pulsating with emotional turmoil, adventure, and suspense."
-- Kirkus Reviews, starred review
* "[A] hard-hitting novel. . . . Filled with both tragic loss and ample evidence of resilience, these memorable and tightly plotted stories contextualize and give voice to current refugee crises, underscoring that these journeys are born out of a desperate need for security and safety." -- Publishers Weekly, starred review
"Gratz, who is known for well-written and well-researched historical fiction, doesn't disappoint. His latest is timely and moving. . . . This compelling novel will help young people make sense of today's refugee crisis. Meant to be read, discussed, and shared widely." -- School Library Journal
"Some novels are engaging and some novels are important. Refugee is both." -- #1 New York Times bestselling author Ruta Sepetys
"This heart-stopping novel is not only compelling -- it is necessary." -- Judy Blundell, National Book Award winning author of What I Saw and How I Lied
"An incredibly important, heartrending, edge-of-the-seat read, bringing light to the plight of immigrants who search for safety and freedom." -- Pam Muñoz Ryan, author of the New York Times bestseller and Newbery Honor Book Echo
"With urgent, clear-eyed storytelling, Gratz's Refugee compellingly explores the desperation and strength that unites those struggling for a place to call home." -- Eliot Schrefer, New York Times bestselling author and two-time National Book Award finalist of Rescued and Endangered
"Full of struggle, heroism, and non-stop adventure, Refugee is not only an important book, it's a terrific story." -- Kimberly Brubaker Bradley, author of the New York Times bestseller and Newbery Honor Book The War That Saved My Life
"Powerful and compelling. Refugee is a story about what unites us all." -- Christina Diaz Gonzalez, award-winning author of Moving Target
Praise for Projekt 1065:
* "While the book is replete with fascinating historical insight, Gratz has also crafted a suspenseful mystery that will keep readers on the edge of their seats. With short, action-packed chapters, it is a great choice for reluctant readers as well... A winning combination of action, suspense, and historical setting." -- School Library Journal, starred review
* "A rare insider's glimpse into the Hitler Youth: animated, well-researched, and thought-provoking." -- Kirkus Reviews, starred review
"[A] high-action spy thriller." -- Booklist
Praise for Prisoner B-3087:
A Junior Library Guild Selection
Golden Sower Award, 2014-2015 Winner Nebraska
Isinglass Teen Read Award, 2014-2015 Winner New Hampshire
Pennsylvania Young Readers' Choice Award, 2014-2015 Winner Pennsylvania
Junior Book Award, 2015-2016 Winner South Carolina
Grand Canyon Reader Award, 2015-2016 Winner Arizona
Truman Readers Award, 2015-2016 Winner Missouri
Readers Choice Awards, Winner 2015-2016 Virginia
Volunteer State Book Award Winner, 2015-2016 Tennessee
"A powerful story, well told." -- School Library Journal
"A bone-chilling tale not to be ignored." -- Kirkus Reviews
"[A] remarkable survival story." -- Booklist
"Gratz ably conveys . . . fatalism, yearning, and determination in the face of the unimaginable." -- Publishers Weekly
"Heartbreaking, gripping, raw, and emotional . . . storytelling at its finest." -- VOYA
Praise for Code of Honor:
"Readers will be swept up by both the intrigue and the rapid pacing... Kamran is a smart and sympathetic narrator, and readers will be happy to spend time with him in this action-packed thriller." -- Kirkus Reviews
"Exciting, at times ripped from the headlines, and scary, this cinematic work has layers of intrigue and danger in each scene... will appeal to a variety of readers and will raise questions about patriotism, loyalty, and trust... A winner." -- School Library Journal
"Vivid characters and timely topics, such as posttraumatic stress disorder, contribute to making Code of Honor a first-rate novel." -- VOYA
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Update: My class read this book as our last book of the year... I had a number of students say this was their favorite books we read all year (we read six other novels). I ended up using the audio book and it was a great decision! It was read by three different narrators and made it even more realistic! Such a great book that led to so many great connections and conversations. We had an amazing discussion at the end of the book and I feel good about helping shape my students views of acceptance and refugees.
There is JOSEF, a Jewish boy living in 1930s Nazi Germany. Hitler has given the ultimatum to Jews that they must leave Germany or be taken to concentration camps. They have fourteen days. He and his family board a ship named the St. Louis, bound for Cuba.
And there is ISABEL a Cuban girl in 1994. In the midst of riots and her father heading for arrest, Castro has said that those who leave will not be arrested. She and her family set out on a cobbled together boat, hoping to find safety in America. Finally, there is MAHMOUD, a Syrian boy in 2015. With his homeland torn apart by violence and destruction, he and his family begin a long trek toward Europe.
All of us have heard parts of these stories, but when written from the viewpoints of early adolescents, sadness almost overwhelms me. How can others find the cruelty to treat children this way? How can it be that children must endure such terrible experiences in their young lives? Alan respects the children’s feelings in his storytelling, but shows how they learn to take charge, how they learn they “must” take charge to help. They give up their childhood to help save their families. There is hope in every part; even in the darkest passages, small kindnesses appear. Learning of children’s lives in all parts of our world is something that will help readers gain sympathy for those who need help. Alan Gratz wrote a long afterword about his research for each time period, and ways we can help today.
'They only see us when we do something they don't want us to do,' Mahmoud realized. The thought hit him like a lightning bolt. When they stayed where they were supposed to be-in the ruins of Aleppo or behind the fences of a refugee camp-people could forget about them. But when refugees did something they didn't want them to do-when they tried to cross the border into their country, or slept on the front stoops of their shops, or jumped in front of their cars, or prayed on the decks of their ferries-that's when people couldn't ignore them any longer.
A calm came over Lito, as though he'd come to some sort of understanding, some decision. 'I see it now, Chabela. All of it. The past, the present, the future. All my life, I kept waiting for things to get better. For the bright promise of manana. But a funny thing happened while I was waiting for the world to change; Chabela: It didn't. Because I didn't change it. I'm not going to make the same mistake twice. Take care of your mother and baby brother for me.'
See us, Mahmoud thought. Hear us. Help us.
Top international reviews
Follow Josef, a Jewish boy on his journey to escape from the Nazi's with his family and his plea to go and live in Cuba. What happens when they are not accepted and turned away? It's set in 1939, and This ends on quite the biggest cliffhanger known to man.
Set in 1994, watch Isabel flee from Cuba and its unfair leader, to go and find refuge in the United States. But to get there, they must cross part of a huge ocean, in a boat, with her bestfriend's not-so-welcoming family. Will they get there safely?
Then there's Muhamad (I don't think I've spelt that right!) A Syrian boy escaping from the huge city Aleppo, and over to Germany to keep away from the deadly attacks they have to face almost daily. Along with his family, he'll need to get across many countriess before he arrives in Germany. Just a few include Hungary, Austria, Turkey. Don't forget having to cross the Mediterranean in a black, inflatable liferaft with many others. With other places starting to turn refugees away, will his journey end in life, or death? (Set in 2015)
This is my favourite one by far.
Josef's story ends on a cliffhanger, but there is a kind of 'link' for lack of any other word, with Muhamad's story at the end, letting you know his fate.
I highly recommend this book. It's the most riveting story ever. Well worth the money. As a quick reader, it took me a good few days of total reading to finish.
A good age range to buy for is probably 9-14. Even older ones would probably still enjoy it lots.
Consider buying this riveting story, you will not regret!
By Sophie aged 11 :D
P.S: Sorry for any typos!