A stunning novel set in the wake of the Second World War, Little Exiles tells the extraordinary story of the forced child migration between Britain and Australia that took place after World War II and how this flight from home shaped the identity of a generation of children.
Jon Heather, proud to be nearly nine, knows that Christmas is a time for family. But one evening in December 1948, no longer able to cope, his mother leaves him by a door, above which the legend reads Chapeltown Boys’ Home of the Children’s Crusade. Several weeks later, still certain his mother will come back, Jon finds himself on a boat set for Australia. Promised paradise, Jon soon realizes the reality of the vast Australian outback is very different; its burnished desert becoming the backdrop for a strict regime of hard work and discipline.
So begins an odyssey that will last a lifetime, as Jon Heather and his group of unlikely friends battle to make their way back home.