June is World Refugee Awareness Month. To bring insight into the diverse experiences of refugees, we’ve rounded up some of the best books by and about refugees. Whether you’re interested in reading a memoir, a reported work of nonfiction, a novel, or sharing a story with a young reader, there’s a book here for everyone. Read on, and enjoy some deep conversations inspired by these thought-provoking books.
This collection of poetry from Mai Der Vang tells the story of the Hmong people, many of whom left Laos for the United States. These poems allow the personal and the historical to mingle in a fascinating and informative way.
This novel inspired by the life of Valentino Achak Deng, a Lost Boy of Sudan, was a National Book Critics Circle Award Nominee for Fiction in 2006.
Dadaab, situated in Kenya, is the largest refugee camp in the world. In City of Thorns, Ben Rawlence takes readers inside the lives of nine people out of the half-million refugees who are living there.
Mohsin Hamid’s Exit West introduces readers to Nadia and Saeed, who fall in love and then must flee their city as violent events begin to unfold. What will this mean for Nadia and Saeed? You’ll have to read to find out.
This reported work of nonfiction follows refugees arriving in Europe from the Middle East. Readers seeking to understand the current refugee crisis will want to pick this one up.
This memoir tells the story of Sungju as a child in North Korea, and how he was forced to fend for himself at a young age. Sungju started a gang, and lived on the margins of society before escaping North Korea.
Atia Abawi’s novel concerns a boy named Tareq and his family as they flee Syria for Turkey, and then leave Turkey for Greece in search of a safe and peaceful place to live. Abawi reported on Syria as a foreign correspondent, and brings her expertise to this story.
Twelve-year-old Nisha grapples with her Muslim and Hindu identity in this moving middle grade novel about life in India after the end of British rule.