Books – Refugee Rights

 An annotated refugee reading list from USA for UNHCR


The Kite Runner
Amir is the son of a well-to-do man in Kabul and Hassan is the son of Amir’s father’s servant and belongs to an underprivileged ethnic minority group. Living in the same house, the two boys live incredibly different lives. Following the Soviet invasion, Amir and his father flee to America while Hassan stays behind in Afghanistan. Multiple study guides available.

  • Author: Khaled Hosseini
  • Source: Barnes & Noble, 2005
  • Grade level: high school – adult


Inside Out & Back Again
Free-verse autobiography of a girl who flees Vietnam in 1995 and is resettled in Alabama as a refugee. Winner of the 2011 National Book Award for Young People’s Literature. Teaching Module available from The Advocates for Human Rights.

  • Author Thanhha Lai
  • Source: Scholastic, 2011
  • Grade level: elementary

Out of Exile: Narratives from the Abducted and Displaced People of Sudan
Decades of conflicts and persecution have driven millions from their homes in all parts of the northeast African country of Sudan. Many thousands more have been enslaved as human spoils of war. In their own words, the narrators of Out of Exile recount their lives before their displacement, the reasons for their flight, and their hopes of someday returning home.  Lesson plans available from Voice of Witness.

  • Author: Craig Walzer (editor)
  • Publisher: Voice of Witness/McSweeney’s
  • Grade Level: middle school – college/adult
  • Subject Area: social studies

Refugee Hotel
Refugee Hotel is a groundbreaking collection of photography and interviews that documents the arrival of refugees in the United States. Evocative images are coupled with moving testimonies from people describing their first days in the US, the lives they’ve left behind, and the new communities they’ve since created. Lesson plans available from Voice of Witness.

  • Author: Gabrielle Stabile and Juliet Linderman (photography and editing)
  • Publisher: Voice of Witness/McSweeney’s
  • Grade Level: middle school – college/adult
  • Subject Area: Social studies