We hope these selections serve to educate, and encourage a dialogue on topics of immigration and displacement, as well as spotlight immigrant and refugee experiences from a variety of places, perspectives, and backgrounds


The Turtle of Oman: A Novel by Naomi Shihab Nye

When Aref, a third-grader who lives in Muscat, Oman, refuses to pack his suitcase and prepare to move to Michigan, his mother asks for help from his grandfather, his Siddi, who takes Aref around the country, storing up memories he can carry with him to a new home.

Available formats: Book, Ebook (Hoopla), Audiobook (Hoopla), Ebook (Overdrive Media on Demand)


Stormy Seas: Stories of Young Boat Refugees by Mary Beth Leatherdale

A desperate last hope for safety and freedom. The plight of refugees risking their lives at sea has, unfortunately, made the headlines all too often in the past few years. This book presents five true stories, from 1939 to today, about young people who lived through the harrowing experience of setting sail in search of asylum: Ruth and her family board the St. Louis to escape Nazism; Phu sets out alone from war-torn Vietnam; José tries to reach the United States from Cuba; Najeeba flees Afghanistan and the Taliban; and after losing his family, Mohamed abandons his village on the Ivory Coast in search of a new life.

Available formats: Book


Children of War: Voices of Iraqi Refugees by Deborah Ellis

Provides interviews with twenty-three young Iraqi children who have moved away from their homeland and tells of their fears, challenges, and struggles to rebuild their lives in foreign lands as refugees of war.

Available formats: Book


The Red Pencil by Andrea Davis Pinkney

After her tribal village is attacked by militants, Amira, a young Sudanese girl, must flee to safety at a refugee camp, where she finds hope and the chance to pursue an education in the form of a single red pencil and the friendship and encouragement of a wise elder.

Available formats: Audiobook (Hoopla)


A Long Walk to Water by Linda Sue Park

When the Sudanese civil war reaches his village in 1985, eleven-year-old Salva becomes separated from his family and must walk with other Dinka tribe members through southern Sudan, Ethiopia, and Kenya in search of a safe haven. Based on the life of Salva Dut, who, after emigrating to America in 1996, began a project to dig water wells in Sudan.

Available formats: Book, Audiobook (Hoopla), Audiobook (Overdrive Media on Demand), Ebook (Overdrive Media on Demand)


Inside Out and Back Again by Thanhha Lai

Through a series of poems, a young girl chronicles the life-changing year of 1975, when she, her mother, and her brothers leave Vietnam and resettle in Alabama.

Available formats: Book, Ebook (Hoopla), Audiobook (Overdrive Media on Demand), Ebook (Overdrive Media on Demand)


When Stars are Scattered by Victoria Jamieson

Omar and his younger brother Hassan live in a refugee camp, and when an opportunity for Omar to get an education comes along, he must decide between going to school every day or caring for his nonverbal brother in this intimate and touching portrayal of family and daily life in a refugee camp.

Available formats: Book


Escape from Aleppo by N.H. Senzai

After Nadia is separated from her family while fleeing the civil war, she spends the next four days with a mysterious old man who helps her navigate the checkpoints and snipers of the rebel, ISIS, and Syrian armies that are littering Aleppo on her way to meeting her father at the Turkish border.

Available formats: Book


Denied, Detained, Deported: Stories from the Dark Side of American Immigration by Ann Bausum

With painstaking research, an unerring eye for just the right illustration, and her unique narrative style, award-winning author Ann Bausum makes the history of immigration in America come alive for young people. The story of America has always been shaped by people from all corners of the Earth who came in search of a better life and a brighter future.

Available formats: Book


Refugee by Alan Gratz

Although separated by continents and decades, Josef, a Jewish boy living in 1930s Nazi Germany; Isabel, a Cuban girl trying to escape the riots and unrest plaguing her country in 1994; and Mahmoud, a Syrian boy in 2015 whose homeland is torn apart by violence and destruction, embark on harrowing journeys in search of refuge, discovering shocking connections that tie their stories together

Available formats: Book, Audiobook (Hoopla), Audiobook CD, Audiobook (Overdrive Media on Demand), Ebook (Overdrive Media on Demand)


Illegal by Eoin Colfer

Ebo is alone. His brother, Kwame, has disappeared, and Ebo knows it can only be to attempt the hazardous journey to Europe, and a better life, the same journey their sister set out on months ago. But Ebo refuses to be left behind in Ghana. He sets out after Kwame and joins him on the quest to reach 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 family.

Available formats: Book


Pie in the Sky by Remy Lai

Sometimes life isn’t a piece of cake… When Jingwen moves to a new country, he feels like he’s landed on Mars. School is torture, making friends is impossible since he doesn’t speak English, and he’s often stuck looking after his (extremely irritating) little brother, Yanghao. To distract himself from the loneliness, Jingwen daydreams about making all the cakes on the menu of Pie in the Sky, the bakery his father had planned to open before he unexpectedly passed away. The only problem is his mother has laid down one major rule: the brothers are not to use the oven while she’s at work. As Jingwen and Yanghao bake elaborate cakes, they’ll have to cook up elaborate excuses to keep the cake making a secret from Mama.

Available formats: Book


Other Words for Home by Jasmine Warga

Sent with her mother to the safety of a relative’s home in Cincinnati when her Syrian hometown is overshadowed by violence, Jude worries for the family members who were left behind as she adjusts to a new life with unexpected surprises.

Available formats: Book, Audiobook (Hoopla), Ebook (Hoopla)


The Boy at the Back of the Class by Onjali Q. Raúf

There used to be an empty chair at the back of Mrs. Khan’s classroom, but on the third Tuesday of the school year a new kid fills it: nine-year-old Ahmet, a Syrian refugee. The whole class is curious about this new boy–he doesn’t seem to smile, and he doesn’t talk much. But after learning that Ahmet fled a “Very Real War” and was separated from his family along the way, a determined group of his classmates band together to concoct the Greatest Idea in the World–a magnificent plan to reunite Ahmet with his loved ones.

Available formats: Ebook (Overdrive Media for Demand)


 

 

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