Christophe's story ISBN: 9781845075217
Published by Frances Lincoln, 2006
One does not expect a book of only 75 pages to be intensely moving and beautifully written, but this one is both. Christophe is a Rwandan refugee, an asylum-seeker in England, and he must learn to cope with life here. School is very difficult at first, but he begins to make friends and even confronts bullies. But it is when his friends accidentally see the long scar on his stomach that his past life begins to come out. Though he speaks English, he has refused to read stories, something his kind teacher, Miss Finch, has found difficult to understand. Why should the written word hold such problems for him? Christophe's beloved grandfather, a master storyteller, has imbued in Christophe that if stories are written down, the pictures created in the mind will fade. Christophe learns that he has inherited his grandfather's talent, and in telling is own sad and dramatic story to his classmates, he becomes one of them. He also learns that stories can be written without losing their power. Black and white drawings add to this marvelously evocative book.