Once again blending multiple story strands that transcend time and place, Andrew Smith tells the story of 15-year-old Ariel, a refugee from the Middle East who is the sole survivor of an attack on his small village. Now living with an adoptive family in Sunday, West Virginia, Ariel’s story of his summer at a boys’ camp for tech detox is juxtaposed against those of a schizophrenic bomber and the diaries of a failed arctic expedition from the late nineteenth century. Oh, and there’s also a depressed bionic reincarnated crow.
The Karensa Federation has conquered a dozen countries, leaving Mara as one of the last free nations in the world. Refugees flee to its borders to escape a fate worse than death—transformation into mutant war beasts known as Ghosts, creatures the Federation then sends to attack Mara.
The legendary Strikers, Mara’s elite fighting force, are trained to stop them. But as the number of Ghosts grows and Karensa closes in, defeat seems inevitable.
Still, one Striker refuses to give up hope… Read more.
Illegal by Eoin Colfer & Andrew Donkin and illustrated by Giovanni Rigano
His sister left months ago. Now his brother has disappeared too, and Ebo knows it can only be to make the hazardous journey to Europe.
Ebo’s epic journey takes him across the Sahara Desert to the dangerous streets of Tripoli, and finally out to the merciless sea. But with every step he holds on to his hope for a new life, and a reunion with his sister.
The Boy Who Wouldn’t Die by David Nyoul Vincent with Carol Nader
David Nyuol Vincent was a little boy when he fled southern Sudan with his father, as war raged in their country. He left behind his distraught mother and sisters, his village, and his childhood and he would never return.
For months David and his father walked across southern Sudan, barefoot, desperately searching for safety, food, and water. They survived the perilous Sahara Desert crossing into Ethiopia only to be separated and for David to be trained as a child soldier and then to survive the next 17 years of his life alone in refugee camps. Life in the camps was a relentless struggle against starvation, air bombings, and people determined to kill him and his people.
In 2004 David was offered a Humanitarian Visa as one of the Lost Boys and was resettled to Australia. Traumatized by what he had seen and endured, he went about the slow and painful process of making a new life for himself – a life away from hunger, away from guns, away from death. A life where David is determined to improve the plight of his people both in Australia and back in the Sudan.
For Malik, the Solstasia festival is a chance to escape his war-stricken home and start a new life with his sisters in the prosperous desert city of Ziran. But when a vengeful spirit abducts Malik’s younger sister, Nadia, as payment into the city, Malik strikes a fatal deal—kill Karina, Crown Princess of Ziran, for Nadia’s freedom.
But Karina has deadly aspirations of her own. Her mother, the Sultana, has been assassinated; her court threatens mutiny; and Solstasia looms like a knife over her neck. Grief-stricken, Karina decides to resurrect her mother through ancient magic . . . requiring the beating heart of a king. And she knows just how to obtain one: by offering her hand in marriage to the victor of the Solstasia competition.