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The Boy Who Could Swim

Adam Jacobi

"The spring continued into the summer like always. To most, it was not different from any other year. People grew older, couples got married, some had children and others, like Yakup, lost their fathers."

The Boy Who Could Swim is a work of literary fiction. It is the story of a boy who is forced to leave the people he loves and the place he calls home in Afghanistan. On his long journey toward Europe, he is faced with numerous challenges that he is forced to overcome.

The novel is based on interviews with refugees. It is also a personal tale. The author witnessed warlords fighting in Afghanistan, he was detained in Iran and was caught in the midst of riots and police violence in Greece.

The Boy Who Could Swim is a story of loss, hopes, shattered dreams and human resilience.


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This is the first novel by the author. He has served as president of an NGO, worked for the UN Refugee Agency in Afghanistan, Sudan, North Macedonia, and Switzerland; Danish Refugee Council; EU in Georgia; UNICEF; and WaterAid. He roamed the globe as an independent journalist focusing on writing, photography, and documentary film. The two latter earned him awards.
In the process of researching the book The Boy Who Could Swim the author spent seventeen days in an Iranian security prison charged with spying; witnessed a warlord in Afghanistan attack his neighbour-another warlord; had to be evacuated after a Taliban attack killed several colleagues and travelled and interviewed migrants on the move. The author's story is pale though in comparison to that of The Boy Who Could Swim and the many displaced children out there right now-alone and on the move.