Brilliant in construct, compelling and extraordinarily moving, this is a book that speaks to each of us and reminds us that while we mightn’t be refugees, we are all newcomers to this country and that everyone has a story worth hearing.
When a boat carrying a group of asylum seekers is sunk by a freak wave, Faris wakes from the shipwreck in an Australia he’s always dreamed of. There are kangaroos grazing under orange trees and the sky is always blue. On a nearby beach, Faris meets a group of young people who have come from far different times and places. They are also seeking refuge, and each has their own story of why they had to leave their own country to make a new life for themselves.
It is only when Faris chooses to return to ‘real life’ and find his father in Australia that he learns the extraordinary truth about the friends he made in the golden beach. From one of Australia’s best-loved authors comes a remarkable story about Australia’s long history of migration and the people who make up our country.
‘French treats her characters sensitively and has crafted an inventive, progressive work of fiction which is sure to have a powerful impact on young and old readers alike’ – West Australian
‘I was thoroughly moved by Refuge – or moreover, the people I met within its pages. This is a lyrical, highly imaginative and important book. It allows children to truly experience and FEEL the impact of refugee like and how it has formed the country we are today – the world we are today’ – Kids’ Book Review
‘It’s perfect timing for Jackie French’s fictional intervention – a young-adult novel that inspires an imaginative engagement with the lives of refugees our government so obviously lacks’ – The Sydney Morning Herald