A 14-year-old boy Rami is adrift in a boat full of strangers from his homeland; his only possession and reminder of home is his precious violin. The small boat carries the promise of a new life away from the destruction of war but the engine has died and they are all alone in a treacherous sea. The travellers begin to tell each other their names and offer to share their food and drink but Rami feels he cannot take their hospitality as he has nothing to offer in return. But when he opens his violin case everyone begs him to play. As Rami begins to play the tension and fear in the boat loosens a little. The music tells the story of a young shepherd boy named Suke and a beautiful wild white stallion who could run like the wind. It is also the story of how the first violin came into being and how music has the ability to cross barriers of race and language and can bring joy where there is darkness. As the story weaves its magic each family joins in by telling some of their own heart-breaking stories which mirror the cruel oppression of the Dark Lord in the story.
This is an extraordinarily striking and moving fable of love and loss and how the power of stories can transform lives, make connections and bring about change, uniting us in our common humanity. It is a lyrical and beautifully told tale giving a compassionate and emotional response to the refugee crisis. The haunting monochrome illustrations complement the text beautifully. This is a book that should be handed to all children and will resonate with all who read it.