While President Trump was campaigning on the wall, Helen Thorpe spent a year inside a “newcomer class” for teenage refugees from Africa, Southeast Asia, the Middle East and Central America. Her resulting book, “The Newcomers,” is a delicate and heartbreaking mystery story, as Thorpe slowly uncovers the secret catastrophes in the lives of young immigrants at South High School in Denver. They arrive mute, and they gradually gain the words and confidence to describe the journeys that led to the classroom. [NYTimes.com]

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