The White Ravens Database

Presented by   Internationale Jugendbibliothek / International Youth Library

Spanish / Mexico

Palabras en mi maleta

(Words in my suitcase)

Castaño, Samuel (text/illus.)
Díaz, Fanuel Hanán (postface)
Ciudad de México: Castillo, 2018. – [36] p.
(Series: Castillo de la lectura)
ISBN 978-607-540-055-6

Migration  | Refugee  | Homeland  | Displacement  | Memory  | Picture book

Reading age: 9+

White Ravens issue: 2019


Most people don’t leave their homeland voluntarily. Escaping war, poverty, persecution, or simply longing to live a more peaceful, secure life are the common goals that unite migrants and refugees everywhere and at all times. In this book, 15 children and young adults appear on 15 double-page spreads as stand-ins for the staggering number of those who share their fate. On the left one reads the name of a person, their country of origin, and a quote from them summarizing the reason they set out toward a future that is (usually) unknown/uncertain. The right side of the spread shows a picture of the person, lost against an empty, white background: While their head is drawn with pencil, their body is made up of tiny drawings and picture snippets. These are the objects and the memories that the people carry inside themselves and which combine together into one body and one life. Composed using a sparse text and an original graphical idea vividly depicting the topic, this book by Colombian illustrator Samuel Castaño creates a powerful impact.