Rating: 5/5 stars
Length: 48 pages
Genres: Poetry, Fiction, Short Stories, Historical Fiction, War, Refugee
Publication date: September 18, 2018
Reading Challenges Met:
1. Read a book written by an Asian author: Hosseini is Afghan.
3. Read a book featuring an Asian character or written by an Asian author who is different from you: I have never been a refugee, nor do I have children.
An illustrated book written in response to the refugee crisis in Syria. Written in the form of a letter from a father to his son, reflecting on the dangerous sea crossing before them.
Impelled to write this story by the haunting image of young Alan Kurdi, the three-year-old Syrian boy whose body washed upon the beach in Turkey in September 2015, Hosseini hopes to pay tribute to the millions of families, like Kurdi’s, who have been splintered and forced from home by war and persecution, and he will donate author proceeds from this book to the UNHCR (the UN Refugee Agency) and The Khaled Hosseini Foundation to help fund lifesaving relief efforts to help refugees around the globe. Hosseini is also a Goodwill Envoy to the UNHCR, and the founder of The Khaled Hosseini Foundation, a nonprofit that provides humanitarian assistance to the people of Afghanistan.
First of all, the message in this story is extremely powerful. While I can only read it from an outsider’s perspective, it’s clear that Hosseini is writing from a place close to his heart. I can’t imagine ever having to deal with a situation such as this one and it breaks my heart to know that millions of people have to deal with this every year.
Second, the artwork in this book helps to further the message of the words. They help bring life to the words on the page. Watching the pallet change as the story progresses from childhood, to war, to hope certainly packs a punch.
While I’m not the biggest fan of poetry in the world, I can appreciate the beauty in this tale. It’s important to know what happens in the world and not everything is sunshine and daisies. I agree that it can be hard to read about, but it’s important to understand the struggles that other people in the world are going through. I’m privileged enough to live in a country that’s not in the midst of a war, and I thank my luck for it every day. I can only hope that everyone is so lucky one day.