In Search of Safety: Voices of Refugees – Written and photographed by Susan Kuklin

 In Search of Safety: Voices of Refugees – Written and photographed by Susan Kuklin, Published by Candlewick Press, 9780763679606, 2020

Format: Hardcover, 246 pages

Rating: 1-5 (5 is an excellent or a Starred review) 5

Genre:  Nonfiction

What did you like about the book? Susan Kuklin has collected first hand accounts of five refugees and woven them into a powerful account of strength and endurance.  Each narrative explains the life-threatening circumstances of five refugees lucky enough to survive, including their escape to freedom.  Each story begins with a watercolor map of the refugee’s homeland and ethnic group.  Back-story of each survivor, family backgrounds, and events leading up to the flight from their birth place as well as subsequent life in a refugee camp are covered.  Each telling is detailed and graphic, without gory details.  Emotional and gut wrenching, these stories will stay with readers as will happiness in the knowledge that these victims, unlike so many of their countrymen, eventually have a chance to live in peace.  Well thought out and insightful, this work will leave a lasting impression on any reader.  End matter consisting of an author’s note, information about the refugee process, chapter notes, and a thorough time line about each ethnic group are available for further reading.

Anything you didn’t like about it?  Just a note that some subjects discussed in this book, such as rape and the slaughtering of innocents, can be disturbing.

To whom would you recommend this book? Readers in grades 10 and up who wish to learn more about refugees coming into the United States would benefit from reading this title. 

Who should buy this book? This would be a good purchase for high school history teachers, librarians or public libraries that need information on refugees.  

Where would you shelve it? Nonfiction

Should we (librarians/readers) put this on the top of our “to read” piles?  I feel that this title would reside on the top of the “to read” pile.

Reviewer’s Name, Library (or school), City and State: Elena Schuck, Nathaniel H. Wixon School Library, Dennis, Massachusetts

Date of review: November 11, 2020

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