Essay on Refugee by Alan Gratz
Three kids have a common goal, to escape their horrible conditions. When the journey to freedom faces them with the worst & they go through the most dreadful situations something inside them changes and they learn to persevere. The book Refugee by Alan Gratz takes us through the escape of 3 different children. Joseff is with his family to escape being sent to concentration camps. Isabel is forced to leave after her home when Cuba goes extremely poor and living conditions are unsuitable for her and her family. Finally, Mohmand leaves after a warfare spreads through his country & his home.takes
When we lose things we love we can still learn to persevere. Josef is living in a nightmare. Him and his family are Jewish and the Nazis have told them they are not allowed to practice their religion. They have no rights and are treated horribly. Josef's father is taken away for practicing his religion one night “Two of the Nazis yanked Josef's father to his feet and dragged him towards the door” (Gratz 3). After this tragedy occurs Josef's mother moves them out. Traveling across the world in search of freedom proves harder than expected. When Josef’s father is released from Concentration camp, he is not the same father that Josef had grown up with and loved so dearly. “Josef gave his mother a frightened look that said What's wrong with papa?” (Gratz 37).
After seeing his father like this the family soon realizes that Josef’s father is no longer a “father figure” and Josef starts to take charge. After his Bar Mitzvah, a Jewish celebration of man to boy, Josef becomes more responsible and instead of constantly talking about the mental loss of his father he steps in to become the father figure for his younger sister. “Maybe this is what becoming a man is, Maybe becoming a man means not relying on your father anymore” (Gratz 75). Weeks after his Bar Mitzvah Josefs father attempts to jump off the side of the boat. Again Josef is saddened by this, but sticks with his family and stays strong and really proves that whatever may face us can be pushed through.
When our hopes are crushed we tend to stop wanting to try to reach other goals, but no matter what we can get through it while changing and maturing as a person. Isabel’s home is located in Cuba and their country's economy is slowly plummeting. She is running out of food to eat and her family is slowing losing hope of staying alive in the conditions. Her family finally decides to escape with their neighbors, which includes Isabel’s best friend Ivan. They're boat is made of the worst materials, but after sailing for so long they finally come across land, in the Bahamas. They're so relieved to have finally found land.
Unfortunately upon their arrival, they are told by a Bahamian officer “You are not allowed to land. Bahamian law forbids the entrance of illegal aliens to the Bahamas. If you step foot on Bohemian soil you will be sent back to your country of origin” (Gratz 175). At first everyone on the boat is discouraged and crushed, but after bystanders throw food and water to them, they continue their voyage and persevere until they reach Florida which allows them in.
Even at the lowest points of our lives, we can get through the worst. Mahmoud is a 12 year old boy living in Syria when a war breaks out that drives him and his family out of their home. As he searches for freedom he faces everyone's biggest fears. For example and ordinary taxi trip turns into a living nightmare “He expected to see the lights of a Serbian border town. Another tent city. Instead, they were stopped in the middle of a lonely stretch of highway surrounded by dark empty fields. And the taxi driver was leaning over the back seat with a pistol aimed straight at them” (Gratz 235). Although this experience scares Mahmoud and his family, he still continues on his journey to freedom. Although this experience is one of many that has turned Mahmounds brother into a expressionless robot. Through all of this Mahmoud learns to cherish his home and family and becomes more thankful for every little thing after his family is safe.
The book Refugee By Alan Gratz may seem like a tragic book that leaves us feeling sad, it is truly a book that teaches us a very important lesson. Even when we are faced with the worst we can get through it and change as a person for the better. This book proves this theme by showing 3 kids who go through the worst and still manage to keep an open heart and eventually find freedom. It challenges the idea that upsetting events turn us into sad people by proving that although we may be sad we have the ability to push through for the good of us and those around us.