One of the exciting parts of every new year (for me at least) is looking through all the great new books being released that year. And let me just tell you, 2018 is going to be a year of amazing books! So many amazing books, in fact, that there was no way I could narrow it down to my usual top 5. It would’ve been an impossible task, trust me. With that said, check out my picks for top 10 new releases of 2018!
Book: The Boat People
Author: Sharon Bala
Genre: realistic fiction
What it’s about: When a boat of Tamil refugees arrives in Canada they think they’ve finally found a place of peace and safety–but fear, intolerance, and bureaucratic political systems get in the way. The five hundred odd refugees fleeing torture, death or forcible conscription in Sri Lanka find themselves imprisoned and stuck as they sit through hearing after hearing to determine if they can even qualify for refugee status.
Mahindan, a single father whose wife died back in Sri Lanka, mourns his separation from his seven-year old son who is put in the women’s prison. Priya, a second generation immigrant and law student, finds herself getting invested in the cases of the refugees even though she always wanted to go into corporate law (and is pretty sure she was only selected for this assignment because of her own Tamil heritage). Grace is an adjudicator overseeing the cases of the refugees and struggling against the fear that she might let a terrorist into the country–despite the fact that her mother keeps comparing their plight to that of Grace’s grandparents, Japanese immigrants who lost everything to the government in World War II. Their stories intertwine in heart wrenching ways as we slowly begin to see that nothing is quite as simple as it seems.