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A House Without Walls

Written by Elizabeth Laird

Illustrated by Lucy Eldridge

Key Stage 2 Adventure Stories Family / Home Stories Gritty Reads

LoveReading View on A House Without Walls

Longlisted for the UKLA Book Awards 2021 | A Julia Eccleshare Pick of the Month September 2019

Award winning Elizabeth Laird brilliantly brings to life thirteen year old Safiya’s new world as a refugee after her family flee from their comfortable home in Damascus because of the war in Syria. Safiya, her brother and father arrive in Jordan with nothing and must turn to relatives for help. Safiya has to adjust to living in a tent without running water. Suddenly, she is cleaning and washing and finding clever ways of making do on very little rather than going to school. But resourceful Safiya never gives up hope of going back to a better way for life or of finding her missing twin sister. A House without Walls is a vivid picture of a family facing an extreme experience with courage and imagination.

Julia Eccleshare M.B.E

More About This Book

Julia Eccleshare's Picks for September 2019 

Sophie Takes To The Sky by Katherine Woodfine

A House Without Walls by Elizabeth Laird

We Are All Greta by Valentina Gianella

Elmer: A Classic Collection Elmer's best loved tales by David McKee

The Fate of Fausto by Oliver Jeffers

All Fall Down by Sally Nicholls


Find out more about the UKLA Awards 2021.

A House Without Walls Synopsis

A House Without Walls is a powerful story of family, hope and redemption amidst the refugee crisis in Syria from the award-winning Elizabeth Laird, illustrated by Lucy Eldridge.

Thirteen-year-old Safiya and her family have been driven out of Syria by civil war. Safiya knows how lucky she is - lucky not to be living in a refugee camp, lucky to be alive. But it's hard to feel grateful when she's forced to look after her father and brother rather than go back to school, and now that she's lost her home, she's lonelier than ever. As they struggle to rebuild their lives, Safiya realizes that her family has always been incomplete and with her own future in the balance, it's time to uncover the secrets that war has kept buried.

A House Without Walls Press Reviews

Praise for Welcome to Nowhere;

Not only does it explain how the war in Syria began in as clear a way as I have ever heard but [Elizabeth Laird] makes her characters lovable, loathable - and believable. They are children of war but not defined by it . . . fascinating and sing[s] with truth. -- Alex O'Connell, The Times Book of the Week

A muscular, moving, thought-provoking book from an award-winning writer -- Guardian

[H]umane and empathetic . . . Not only eye-opening, important and topical, but a vivid, emotionally involving, nail-biting read . . .an effective call to action. -- Nicolette Jones, The Sunday Times Book of the Week

Book Information

ISBN: 9781509880720
Publication date: 22nd August 2019
Author: Elizabeth Laird
Illustrator: Lucy Eldridge
Publisher: Macmillan Children's Books an imprint of Pan Macmillan
Format: Hardback
Year Groups: Key Stage 2
Topics: Adventure Stories, Family / Home Stories, Gritty Reads

About Elizabeth Laird

Elizabeth Laird is the multi-award-winning author of several much-loved children's books, including The Garbage King, The Prince Who Walked with Lions and The Fastest Boy in the World. She has been shortlisted for the prestigious CILIP Carnegie Medal six times. She lives in Britain now, but still likes to travel as much as she can. Read more about the author here.   Photo: © Anne Mortensen

More About Elizabeth Laird

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