"Refuge- A Retelling of the Nativity" from Nosy Crow


“Every day one in every 200 children wakes as a refugee having been forced to flee their homeland. In this new book, which beautifully adapts the nativity story to a setting of today’s refugee crisis, readers can find a message of hope about a vulnerable family that is met with kindness and warmth."
Rob Williams, War Child

On 6 October 2016, multi-award winning independent children’s publisher, Nosy Crow, will release the paperback edition of Refuge, which has so far raised £30,000 for the charity War Child. 

The hardback sold out its original print run in two weeks last Christmas, and the publisher aims to keep the book in print and the donations to War Child coming with this new edition. As we approach the Christmas season, the book is a reminder of the more important things in life as well as a gentle, thought-provoking way of discussing the subject of refugees with younger children.

Refuge is a retelling of the Christmas story, but one with a difference: the focus of this short, lyrical picture book is that, after the birth of Jesus, the family become refugees from Herod’s soldiers as they make their way to safety in Egypt. 

To emphasise the parallels with refugees around the world, the story is told from the point of view of a donkey that travels with them: to the donkey they are just a ‘man’, ‘woman’ and ‘child’. The intention of the book is to help parents with young children broach the difficult subject of the refugee crisis as children begin asking questions about the news pictures they see of boys and girls their own age in unimaginable circumstances.

Author Anne Booth said about the book: “Whenever I think about refugees I think about what happened directly after the first Christmas. I hoped that retelling this part of the story would help people empathise with refugees today. I’m delighted Nosy Crow and War Child agreed.” 

Just before illustrating the book, Sam Usher had visited the “Jungle” refugee camp in Calais travelling with a friend who was delivering supplies to refugees, and saw for himself the misery of the refugees there.

Rob Williams of War Child explained how the charity “supports more than 125,000 children and their families around the world who have been affected by conflict, often providing the much needed support and refuge. We’re delighted that this book has already made so much for us and I’d like to thank Nosy Crow for their generosity in helping and would encourage every family to add this to their Christmas wish list.”

The hardback edition of Refuge, written by Anne Booth and illustrated by Sam Usher, was published on 12 November 2015, just seven weeks after Anne Booth’s story arrived at the publisher’s office. Anne Booth and Sam Usher waived royalties, and Nosy Crow ensured £5 from each copy sold was donated to War Child, by taking no profit, and asking suppliers and booksellers to take no profit or minimise costs. The book sold out the 6,000 copies printed in two weeks, raising £30,000 for War Child.

For every copy of the paperback sold, Nosy Crow will donate £1 to War Child, and the publisher aims to keep the book in print and the donations to War Child coming as the book becomes a new Christmas classic.

Kate Wilson, Managing Director of Nosy Crow, said: “In a 30-year career in publishing, and having published books as diverse as The Gruffalo and Horrible Histories, Refuge is one of the books I am most proud of. Anne’s story, complemented by Sam’s beautiful illustrations, is a simple way to help children understand what it might mean to be a refugee by linking it to a story that is familiar to so many of us, particularly as we begin to think about Christmas. Publishing Refuge in paperback gives us a sustainable way of communicating the message and continuing to support the excellent work of War Child.”

Refuge is published in paperback on 6 October at £7.99 by Nosy Crow

Anne Booth:
Anne’s debut novel Girl with a White Dog was shortlisted for the Waterstones Prize. She lives with her husband, four teenage children and two dogs.

Sam Usher:
Sam’s debut Can You See Sassoon? was shortlisted for the Waterstones Prize and the Red House Children’s Book Award and Snow was nominated for the 2016 Greenaway Award.

War Child:
War Child is striving for a world where children’s lives are no longer torn apart by war.
We are the only specialist charity for children in conflict, delivering high-impact programmes that are rebuilding lives across Afghanistan, Iraq, Jordan, Uganda, the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) and Central African Republic. We understand children’s needs, respect their rights, and put them at the centre of the solution - from supporting Syrian children to access education, to reintegrating child soldiers in the Central African Republic and enabling girls to escape life on the streets in the DRC.

We aim to reach children early in the conflict cycle and stay to support them through their recovery, providing education and protection services and also building longer-term livelihood opportunities. We support children to deal with the traumas of armed conflict, equipping
them with the skills and knowledge to go back to school, and providing training to young people so they can support themselves.
We believe that children and young people know what matters to them and that their voices and demands should be heard – we work with them to build their confidence as advocates and to mobilise others to take action in support of them.

Web: https://www.warchild.org.uk/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/warchilduk/ Twitter: https://twitter.com/WarChildUK Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/warchilduk/
Charity number: 1071659

Nosy Crow:
Nosy Crow is currently the Independent Publisher’s Guild’s Independent Publisher of the Year. The company has won a range of business, industry and book- and app-specific awards, and is, after just less than 6 years of publishing, the 13th biggest publisher of children’s books in the UK. Nosy Crow believes in encouraging children to read for pleasure, whatever reading material and whatever reading experience they choose.


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