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Alyssa Hollingsworth is American and The Invisible Boy is her second novel. Her first novel, The Eleventh Trade was inspired by a trip she took to Afghanistan with an NGO to spend time with her sister and the Afghan people she works with. Alyssa wrote an award-winning essay about that experience and continues to work with refugees in the USA, helping them to adjust to their new lives. Alyssa is currently living in Bath where is she is taking a PhD in Creative Writing at Bath Spa University.
Of The Eleventh Trade, Alyssa says, "Sami's tale was inspired by the Afghans I met in Afghanistan, my older sister's nine years of NGO work in-country, and by the attack at the American charity Roots of Peace in March 2014. Unlike Sami's parents, my sister made it out alive. But I can never forget what it felt like to see a picture of the bombed-out house, printed in Time magazine. The Eleventh Trade is an attempt to give voice to the victims of war who continue to struggle with hope and healing even after they are 'safe'."
A Julia Eccleshare Pick of the Month September 2020 | Cleverly blending an upbeat story of a girl who loves Superman comics and is determined to be a super sleuth in the style of Lois Lane and a contemporary story of a child being trafficked and held in slavery, The Invisible Boy is a fast-paced read with a strong message. When Nadia’s dog is rescued by a boy she has never seen in the neighbourhood before, she immediately labels him ‘The Invisible Boy’ and is determined to find out who he is. Influenced by the comics she reads Nadia is used to making up dramas, often jumping to the wrong conclusions! How Nadia pieces together the real story of her new friend is a well-crafted drama. Nadia’s shock and horror is powerfully conveyed.
Winner of the UKLA Book Awards 2020 | Sami gets by in Boston on the money his grandfather makes on the street playing his rehab. When the instrument is stolen, Sami needs to find $700 to get it back. All he has is a man United key ring. It’s only going to be possible if Sami is prepared to accept help. This is a great book for readers not quite ready for YA fiction. It is raw, relevant but full of hope.