In The Door of No Return, Kwame Alexander introduces the reader to 11-year-old Kofi and his tight-knit family. Kofi is smart, friendly, and a strong swimmer, showing off in the waters of the Offin River, the fastest of all his friends. Kofi dreams of water and wonders what his dreams mean. Nana Mosi, his grandfather and the village storyteller, warns Kofi, “The water is not your friend, at night…” Kofi wonders about all Nana Mosi’s sayings and stories but pays attention. Kofi knows his dreams and his grandfather’s teachings will keep him alert to the changes in the village. He will need every ounce of this knowledge in the future.
Kofi’s story weaves the reader in and then untwists the mind and heart as the plot moves forward. Hope builds, then curtails as the reader gasps for a breath before each new chapter. This novel-in-verse is a perfect collection, examining several forms of poetry through the pages while examining human existence. As the water of the Offin drifts, the reader’s expectations roll along, waiting for the next wave. (This book is the first in a trilogy.)
Thank you to Little, Brown Books for Young Readers and the author for the early copy of this fabulous tale and the expanded education for all readers. (Expected publication on September 27, 2022)