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While the Earth Sleeps We Travel: Stories, Poetry, and Art from Refugee Youth Around the World by Ahmed M. Badr

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ARC was provided by NetGalley and Andrews McMeel Publishing in exchange for an honest review.

This review is being published before the release date (October 13th, 2020)

Content/Trigger Warnings: War themes, bombings, refugee crisis, poverty, homelessness, mentions of gang violence, talk of racism, Islamophobia, mentions of terminal illness (cancer), death, murder, mentions of homophobia, mentions of drug abuse and drug addiction, grief, loss of a loved one, trauma, mentions of terrorism

“Together, we are speaking up and proclaiming to the world that our existence is worthy of its attention.”

Friends, I truly cannot express how important this collection is. I truly believe with my whole heart that this collection is a gift that should be talked about so much more. It’s rare when we hear the voices of people who have been severely impacted because of war, violence, and other hardships, but even rarer when they’re children. I think I spent my entire reading experience crying. This book truly is a gift and I hope many readers decide to pick this book up.

While the Earth Sleeps We Travel is a collection of poetry, stories, and art by refugees who have been displaced for various reasons, but the most common is war and violence. In this book these people come together to share their hardships, their experiences, hopes, and dreams. From those who are just children to an elderly artist determined to teach their artwork to those who’ll listen, we’ll hear the voices of refugees from a plethora of places. All beautifully expressed on page to be shared with the world.

“We have to find out what people like and need and use that to help them towards a better future.”

Truly, this book is a gift. It’s heartbreaking, humbling, and encouraging. As I mentioned, I spent the entirety of this book crying because it was so moving. I’ve listed some of the pieces that really stood out and touched the softest part of my heart.

⛰️ Erwin’s Story
⛰️ Lina Habazi’s Story
⛰️ Karem Potela’s Story
⛰️ O’s Story
⛰️ Meteorite Yasan’s Story

I truly hope everyone picks this book up and take the time to listen to the voices on the pages in this book. I think this book is going to unravel many people, cause the readers to pause and really take a look at their privilege. I don’t think everyone will appreciate this book, but I think everyone needs to read this book at least once in their life.

Overall, this was just a really touching book. I can’t encourage you enough to take the time to pick this book up and hear the voices of these people. Their experiences, their souls have been laid bare for all to read and experience in this book. This is such an important collection and I hope it gets the spotlight that it truly deserves.

The quotes above were taken from an ARC and are subject to change upon publication.

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3 thoughts on “While the Earth Sleeps We Travel: Stories, Poetry, and Art from Refugee Youth Around the World by Ahmed M. Badr

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