A powerfully moving, award-winning graphic novel that explores the current plight of undocumented immigrants from New York Times bestselling author Eoin Colfer and the team behind the Artemis Fowl graphic novels. How can a human being be illegal for simply existing?
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.
An achingly poignant tale for learning about immigration and current global issues. This book is fiction, but it is based on a very real and terrible journey. There are young people who have lived this, and it is a story those young people want us to know about.
2019 Excellence in Graphic Literature Award Winner A New York Public Library Best Book of 2018 A Chicago Public Library Best Book of 2018 An Amazon Best Book of 2018 A Kirkus Reviews Best Middle Grade Graphic Novel of 2018 An American Library Association Notable Book for 2019 2019 YALSA Top Ten Great Graphic Novels for Teens 2019 CBC Notable Social Studies Book A Junior Library Guild Selection
"Action-filled and engaging but considerate of both topic and audience, Ebo's story effectively paints a picture of a child refugee's struggle in a world crisscrossed by hostile borders." — Kirkus Reviews
"The horrors Ebo witnesses, the impossibilities he survives, are haunting testimony to the human spirit. Artemis Fowl series creator Colfer (who taught elementary school in Italy, Saudi Arabia, and Tunisia) leads the team... in transforming staggering statistics (UNHCR's 2017 data cites 65.6 million have been forcibly displaced) into a resonating story about a single boy and what remains of his family. Italian artist Rigano's gorgeously saturated panels—rich in details, affecting in its captured expressions, landscapes made spectacular as if a reminder of everyday beauty despite tragedy—proves to be an enhancing visual gift to the already stirring story. A creators' note and quotes from real refugees close out this illuminating, important volume. " — Booklist, STARRED Review
"Moving and informative, Illegal puts an unforgettable human face to the issue of immigration; it is recommended for all readers of middle school level or higher." — ForeWord, STARRED review
"Raw, realistic, and emotional, this graphic novel puts a harrowing spin on immigration and the risks people take to seek opportunities in other countries.... This graphic novel...makes truths about humanity abundantly clear with the frightening situations and tragic outcomes conveyed through the narrative, emotive illustrations, and the true story in the last five pages. Middle and high schools can use this book in curriculum and recommend it to comic enthusiasts." — VOYA Magazine