Fiction, Graphic Novel, Middle School, Realistic

Illegal by Eoin Colfer

Illegal tells the immigration story of Ebo. Ebo wakes up one morning to discover his brother has left, following in the path of their older sister (Sisi), attempting to find his way to Europe. Ebo refuses to be left behind and starts the dangerous journey out of Ghana, through the dessert and across the sea. The graphic novel is told from two points in time – one is Ebo, Kwame and others in a small boat crossing the sea to Italy and the other is the journey to get to the sea. Along the way people are killed by the harsh conditions of the desert, the cruel treatment of human traffickers, and the indifference of people and the elements. However, there is also the love of two brothers, the kindness of strangers with a common goal, and the hope of something better.

Ebo is a fictional character, but his story based in truth. Thousands attempt this trek – all for different reasons, war, poverty, famine – risking and many losing their lives for the hope of something better. A harrowing and heartbreaking work.

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