"Be strong, my Abela."
These are the last words of Abela's mother in their HIV/Aids stricken African village, where it seems that to live or to die, to be sick or to be healthy, is just a matter of chance. It takes all Abela's strength to survive her Uncle Thomas's scheming to get to Europe, but what will be her fate as an illegal immigrant?
"I don't want a sister or brother," thinks Rosa in England, when her mother tells her that she wants to adopt a child. Could these two girls ever become sisters? Is there room in Rosa's family for an African orphan haunted by lions? Is there room in their hearts?
Abela is a powerful and moving story influenced by a visit to Africa, from the Carnegie Medal-winning author Berlie Doherty writing at her very best.