Am 9. November haben sowohl Wendelin van Draanen als auch Alan Gratz die HPS besucht, um in jeweils zwei Lesungen Schülerinnen und Schüler für die mit dem Bullen ausgezeichneten Romane (Acht Wochen Wüste bzw. Vor uns das Meer) und für Literatur ganz allgemein zu begeistern.

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Hier der Bericht der 10D:

On November 9th, 2021, Alan Gratz, the famous author of multiple books, visited our school and gave a presentation about his most famous book, Refugee (in German: Vor uns das Meer). It features three refugees from different locations and time periods, who all have more in common than you might think.

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The story revolves around three young refugees, Josef from Nazi Germany, Isabel from Cuba in 1994 and Mahmoud from Syria in 2015. They all need to flee to a different country over the deadly ocean. Alan wanted to capture real stories and crises into one big ‘fictional’ story to let the world know of these people’s struggles.

 

Alan told us about the writing process, which took approximately a year and nine months and lots of research to do. His inspirations for Refugee were the ‘MS. St. Louis’, which tried to bring hundreds of Jews to America, but was denied access last minute, the refugee crisis due to war in Syria in 2015 and a self-made boat he saw on vacation that was presumably made and used by Cuban refugees. He figured he wanted to write about all of these stories, so why not put them all into a single book?

 

Even though he seemed a bit nervous in the beginning, Alan did a great job at presenting his inspirations and stories and answering all of our questions. Everyone was engaged and paid attention quietly, it truly was a pleasure listening to his presentation. We were also told that real refugees, who experienced these stories themselves, reached out to Alan and found the book astonishingly on point.

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In the end it was incredibly fun and highly informative and inspiring to listen to what Alan Gratz had to say and I’d most certainly recommend his books to all of you.

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