Acclaimed performance poet and novelist Benjamin Zephaniah's honest, wry and poignant story of a young refugee left in London is of even more power and pertinence today than when it was first published. Life is not safe for Alem. His father is Ethopian, his mother Eritrean. Their countries are at war, and Alem is welcome in neither place. So Alem is excited to spend a holiday in London with his father - until he wakes up to find him gone. What seems like a betrayal is in fact an act of love, but now Alem is alone in a strange country, and he must forge his own path ... Brilliantly written and with a real ear for dialogue, fans of Angie Thomas and Malorie Blackman will love Benjamin Zephaniah's novels for young adult readers: Refugee Boy Face Gangsta Rap Teacher's Dead
The personal, funny and poignant tale of a young refugee, from acclaimed storyteller Benjamin Zephaniah
The playful, obstinate and courageously humorous tone of Zephaniah's writing shines through ... hilarious and later heartbreaking * Alfred Hickling, Guardian on REFUGEE BOY * Sweet, funny, highly inventive * Yorkshire Post on REFUGEE BOY * Humour and innocence are both to the fore as is a sweetness of tone ... more street than poetic, and personal yet universal, Refugee Boy is well told by impassioned writer * York Press on REFUGEE BOY * A brilliant first novel * Guardian on FACE * A lively and positive account of a boy who is badly scarred in a joyriding crash, and how he comes to terms with it ... incredibly well told * Irish Times on FACE * An impressive debut, carefully researched ... Zephaniah writes wonderfully natural dialogue with the same ease as he spins out rhyming couplets * Herald on FACE * The authority with which the story is written leaves the reader no choice but to be drawn in - and indeed educated - into the world of gangsta rap, with all the appropriate vocabulary. Not for a long time have I read a book with such a 'pick me up again' factor * Independent on Sunday on GANGSTA RAP * A fairytale of hip-hop success ... teens will enjoy the thrilling music fantasy, while many will identify with the smart, talented boys who grow up quickly and rescue themselves * Booklist on GANGSTA RAP * Benjamin Zephaniah rides straight through everybody's taboos, everybody's prejudices, everybody's niceties and gets straight to the heart of the matter ... Strong, honest, democratic, accessible to all, Teacher's Dead comes highly recommended * The Bookbag's Jill Murphy on TEACHER'S DEAD *
Benjamin Zephaniah is probably one of the most high-profile international authors writing today, with an enormous breadth of appeal, equally popular with adults and children. Well known for his performance poetry with a political edge for adults and groundbreaking performance poetry for children, Benjamin has also written several urban novels for teenagers. Benjamin has his own rap/reggae band and has appeared on Desert Island Discs. He travels the world speaking about his books and poetry.