In 1942 in the south of France, a young autistic boy named Lorenzo learns to trust Kezia, a Roma girl whose parents operate a carousel in a nearby town.
Lorenzo is unable to speak more than a few words to people, but he has a unique way of communicating with animals, especially with the flamingos that populate the Camargue where he lives. He also has a gift for healing animals. The local people call him Flamingo Boy. Though they mock him for his unusual behaviours, they also respect his gifts.
When the Germans invade France, Kezia and Lorenzo’s lives become connected in ways they could never have imagined as danger threatens them. Kezia grapples to understand the German’s hatred of the Jews, the Roma people, and her friend Lorenzo. Her mother explains the enemy’s malevolent motivation: “Because we are different. There is no other reason.”
Juvenile readers will discover in Flamingo Boy a world where trust is built between the most unlikely people on both sides of a conflict, and where hope, though seemingly lost, is yet experienced. They will also learn about the power of creativity to mend broken hearts and forge new purpose for living.
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