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Akin, Dartford Grammar School

The Bone Sparrow

In the Australian refugee camp where he was born and has never left, Subhi a young boy, shares a crowded tent with his mother, older sister, and others all with dreams of an unbounded world and the Night Sea.
Subhi craves story to feed his vivid imagination, especially the ones his mother tells of life back in Burma, but Maá rarely speaks now. Camp living conditions are horrible with inedible food, appalling sanitation, and the Jackets’ inhumane treatment. Subhi helps his friend Eli trade valuable items among detainees until Eli is sent to live with the adult single men then his companionship is limited to the Shakespeare duck, a rubber duck he keeps in his pocket to talk to and who talks back in his portion of the narration. Near the camp, another child, Jimmie, also 10, lives with her father and brother. Jimmie can’t yet read her dead mother’s notebook of stories but loves them and her. After hearing a rumour that refugee kids have bikes, Jimmie sneaks into the camp unnoticed. After meeting Subhi, who’s happy to read the stories to her, she visits frequently, bringing hot chocolate and snacks. These easily accomplished visits don’t square with the horrible conditions and contradict the brutal realities already conveyed. This enthralling book will make anyone love it.

Posted on: 10th May 2017 at 10:57 am

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