Fall 2020


  • Interest Level: Kindergarten - Grade 3   ·  
  • Reading Level: Grade 2

The migrants must leave the forest. Borders are crossed, sacrifices made, loved ones are lost. It takes such courage to reach the end. At last the journey is over and the migrants arrive. This is the new place.

With forceful simplicity, Migrants narrates the journey of a group of animals leaving a leafless forest. Borders must be crossed, sacrifices made, loved ones left behind.

Watanabe takes extraordinary care to show the individuality and humanity of each migrant—through the detailed patterns on their clothing, their care of each other as they set up camp, the symbol of the blue ibis showing the connection between past and future, life and death.

Format Your Price
Interest Level Kindergarten - Grade 3
Reading Level Grade 2
Genre Fiction
Category SEL: C Social Awareness, Social Emotional Learning
Copyright 2020
Publisher Gecko Press
Imprint Gecko Press
Language English
Number of Pages 40
Publication Date 2020-10-06
Text Type Fiction
BISACS JUV039030, JUV039250, JUV002000
Dewey [Fic]
Dimensions 9 x 9
Guided Reading Level TBD
Features Awards, Original artwork, Reviewed, and Starred Reviews


  • 2021 USBBY Outstanding International Book, Winner, 2021
  • Kirkus Best Children's Books, Winner, 2020


The Horn Book Magazine

“This powerful portrait—stark, eloquent, and utterly devoid of sentimentality—depicts the arduous, dangerous journeys of migrants all across the globe. It’s a small book that tells a big story of loss and courage.”—The Horn Book Magazine

Publishers Weekly

" . . . Watanabe captures with grace both dignity and determination . . . "—Publishers Weekly

Kirkus Reviews

“It’s beautiful and harrowing, challenging readers to think.”—Kirkus Reviews

Kirkus Reviews

“It’s a rare feat: a wordless picture book in which the absence of text intensifies the stories it tells. . . . A raw, startling portrait of migration.”—starred, Kirkus Reviews

Author, Illustrator: Issa Watanabe

Issa Watanabe was born in Peru, the daughter of an illustrator and a poet. She studied Literature, Fine Arts, and Illustration. She has led projects promoting social integration through art and published many books.