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Sarah W, Chobham Academy Book Group

The Bone Sparrow

"The Bone Sparrow" by Zana Fraillon is a wonderful story about a young boy named Subhi, who lives in a refugee camp in Australia. Unlike anybody else in the camp, he was born there and has had no experience of the mysterious outside world. For his whole life, Subhi has lived with the awful conditions of the camp and has survived terrible events including food shortages, the lack of water and awful illnesses. One day, Jimmie (a girl who lives outside of the camp) turns up. She starts becoming friends with Subhi and describes what it is like to live on the other side of the barbed wire fence.
I think this book is extremely important to read since it explains to you the complications of living as a refugee and makes you empathize with them. Also, this novel shocks you because it shows how people living near the camp have no idea what truly goes on there.I believe it is thoroughly important to read this story because ,although the characters and plot are fictional, living in a refugee camp and conditions there are not. In addition, if more people know about what happens in refugee camps, the problem is more likely to be resolved.
In a way, this novel reminds me of "The Boy in The Striped Pajamas" since it revolves around two young children on either side of a barbed wire fence. However, one difference is that Subhi's and Jimmie's lives don't contrast a lot because Jimmie doesn't live a perfect life herself: she lives in a small, rundown house, she can't read or write, her father works away a lot and things like chocolate are an extra-special treat. Personally, I love this aspect since it means they have more in common.
Another thing I adore about this book is the unexpected humour. This book is written in Subhi's perspective but occasionally slips into third person when it describes what Jimmie is doing. Because of this, jokes and a chatty tone is sometimes used- making it even more enjoyable.
Overall, I think this book is incredible because it shows what is really happening to refugees right now; how we can help this problem and sometimes has a chatty, humourous tone.I think children aged eleven to fourteen will enjoy this story the most.

Posted on: 22nd April 2017 at 02:28 pm

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