The White Ravens Database

Presented by   Internationale Jugendbibliothek / International Youth Library

Greek / Greece

Melak, monos

(Melak, alone)

Pipinē, Argyrō (Pipini, Argyro) (text)
Razēs, Achilleas (Razis, Achilleas) (illus.)
Athēna: Kaleidoskopio (Kaleidoscope Publ.), 2016. – [34] p.
ISBN 978-960-471-121-5

Refugee  | Migration  | War  | Picture book

Reading age: 6+

White Ravens issue: 2017


Migration and escape have shaped the history of Greece and the topic has formed its own category in Greek children’s literature. In recent years, such books have focused on refugee children, sensitizing readers to topics such as tolerance, acceptance, and integration. This story about Melak is no exception. Melak is alone and afraid; he lost his homeland because of war and was forced to flee, with his little sister in tow. Renowned author Argyro Pipini stirs readers’ empathy, letting them intimately experience Melak’s desperate situation by means of a clear, riveting portrayal of events, a subtle and perceptive use of language and a smart alternation of first- and third-person perspectives. The expressive picture sequences of artist Achilleas Razis employ intense colours and skilful light effects to reveal the entire spectrum of the text – from dismal terror to shining hope. An unusual format and high-quality paper complete this aesthetically outstanding picture book.