Saturday, August 11, 2018


Cover image for IllegalColfer, Eoin and Donkin, Andrew. Illegal
August 7th 2018 by Sourcebooks
ARC from Follett

Ebo and his older brother Kwame are living in an African village with their Uncle Patrick, who is an alcoholic and barely takes care of them. Their older sister has fled to the city. When Kwame takes off as well, Ebo follows him to Agadez, which is much bigger than Ebo could have imagined. He connects with lots of people and ends up singing at a wedding, where he manages to find his brother. The two get passage on an overcrowded boat. It's a treacherous journey, and Kwame goes overboard at one point. Ebo makes it to Europe, where his picture is shown on television. Luckily, his sister sees him and tracks him down.
Strengths: This graphic novel delivers a timely story in an appealing format, and offers details about the difficulty that people have when fleeing horrible socio-political situations in troubled countries. Hopefully, this will help the readers understand the effort made to come to countries where life is not so hard for most people, but where people like Ebo and Kwame are considered "illegal".
Weaknesses: It was hard to flip back and forth through time between the boat ride and when the boys are in the city. The changes in color palette help, but a linear plot would have been clearer.
What I really think: I will purchase a copy, and know that my ESL teacher will be particularly interested in this.
Ms. Yingling

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