About the Book
On the island of Lesbos, two observers of the refugee crisis—American blog journalist Sophie based in Athens and Mytilini artist and sailor Nikos—take on the rescue of Farid, a young Syrian man trying to escape Turkey and reach contacts in Germany. Sophie, Nikos, and Farid become involved with many ugly aspects of the trafficking experience as they take part in and report on the desperate journey of refugees throughout Europe. Sophie, Nikos, and Farid reach out to other refugees, to authorities both cooperative and uncooperative, and to each other. What they see on the refugee trail is often exploitative and injurious. What they do to help the unwanted chronicles the humanity of those who can empathize and are willing stand up to victimization.
About the Author
Ellen Boneparth has made close to twenty visits to the island of Lesbos over the last thirty-five years as a summer program director, diplomat, godmother to Katerina, home restorer and owner, and passionate devotee of the island. Her last visit in September 2015 coincided with the peak arrival period for refugees from Turkey—approximately three thousand people a day. Witnessing the refugee flood and interacting with local Greeks coping with a crisis for which they had few resources inspired her to write this novel. While Unwanted is set in 2014 when the refugee flood was barely manageable, today the deluge has overwhelmed Greece and the rest of Europe, creating yet another chapter of despair for the refugees themselves.