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Alpha Abidjan to Gare du Nord by Bessora

Alpha Abidjan to Gare du Nord

NewGen - YA Fiction   Biography / Autobiography   The Real World   Travel   
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Alpha hopes that his wife and little son are in Paris and he’s desperate to see them. Denied a visa to travel he must make the long, long journey from his home in the Cote D’Ivoire to Europe as an illegal immigrant, or as he says ‘adventurer’. The story is told through striking images, mostly black and white, colour is used sparingly; sophisticated yet childlike too they vividly depict the people and places of his journey and each one has the power to bring the reader up short. The text too equally demands and holds our attention. Though this is very much one man’s journey it’s one undertaken by many thousands of others and, as Michael Morpurgo says in his introduction, it’s a story we all need to hear and to understand. ~ Andrea Reece

Other books for young readers that sensitively but honestly explain the situation facing refugee or immigrant children include Kiss the Dust by Elizabeth Laird, Refugee Boy by Benjamin Zephaniah and The Unforgotten Coat by Frank Cottrell Boyce.

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Alpha Abidjan to Gare du Nord by Bessora

Alpha Coulibaly is emblematic of the refugee crisis today - just one of millions on the move, at the mercy of people traffickers, endlessly frustrated, endangered and exploited as he attempts to rejoin his family, already in Europe. With a visa, Alpha's journey would take a matter of hours; without one he is adrift for eighteen months. Along the way he meets an unforgettable cast of characters, each one giving another human face to the crisis. The book is presented in graphic novel format, with artwork created in cheap felt-tip pen and wash, materials Alpha himself might be able to access.

About the Author

Bessora is a novelist and short story writer. She was awarded the Feneon Prize in 2001 for her novel Ink Stains, and the Grand prix litteraire d'Afrique noire in 2007 for Pick Me Pretty Sirs... Barroux studied in France at the famous Ecole Estienne and Ecole Boule. He went on to work as an art director in Paris and Montreal. He is now well known for his children's book illustrations.

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Book Info

Publication date

15th August 2016



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The Bucket List an imprint of Barrington Stoke Ltd


212 pages


NewGen - YA Fiction
Biography / Autobiography
The Real World

Comic strip fiction / graphic novels (Children's / Teenage)



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