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The Waiting Place: When Home Is Lost and a New One Not Yet Found

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The Waiting Place: When Home Is Lost and a New One Not Yet Found

author: Dina Nayeri
illustrator: Anna Bosch Miralpeix

Every war, famine, and flood spits out survivors.

The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) cites an unprecedented 79.5 million forcibly displaced people on the planet today. In 2018, Dina Nayeri—a former refugee herself and the daughter of a refugee—invited documentary photographer Anna Bosch Miralpeix to accompany her to Katsikas, a refugee camp outside Ioannina, Greece, to record the hopes and struggles of ten young Farsi-speaking refugees from Iran and Afghanistan. “I wanted to play with them, to enter their imagined worlds, to see the landscape inside their minds,” she says. Ranging in age from five to seventeen, the children live in partitioned shipping-crate homes crowded on a field below a mountain. Battling a dreary monster that wants to rob them of their purpose, dignity, and identity, each survives in his or her own special way.

The Waiting Place is an unflinching look at ten young lives suspended outside of time—and bravely proceeding anyway. Each lyrical passage leads the reader from one story to the next, revealing the dreams, ambitions, and personalities of each displaced child. The stories are punctuated by intimate photographs, followed by the author’s reflections on life in a refugee camp. Locking the global refugee crisis sharply in focus, The Waiting Place is an urgent call to change what we teach young people about the nature of home and safety.

An unflinching look at ten young lives suspended outside of time—and bravely proceeding anyway—inside the Katsikas refugee camp in Greece.
suggested retail price (U.S./CAN):
$18.99 / $0.00
1536218545 /  9781536218541
on sale date:
Non-Fiction - Picture Book / EBook
age range:
12 yrs and up
# of pages/size:
48 / N/A
grade range:
Grade 7 and up
Social Topics;
author’s comments:
Dina Nayeri is a former refugee and the author of the adult title The Ungrateful Refugee, a finalist for the Los Angeles Times Book Prize and the Kirkus Prize. Her work has been published in more than twenty countries and in The O. Henry Prize Stories, The Best American Short Stories, the New York Times, and many other publications. Of her work with Anna Bosch Miralpeix for The Waiting Place, she says, “Each morning we set off, me with my notebook, she with her camera and tripod, to see these brave little people fighting back against the waiting place—the monster that wants to get inside you, to change you.” Dina Nayeri lives in Paris.
illustrator’s comments:
Anna Bosch Miralpeix is a documentary photographer whose projects include the award-winning Bubble Beirut. A graduate of Institut d’Estudis Fotogràfics de Catalunya, she is also a teacher and visual project developer.
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