Winner of the CBC Canada Reads competition, Maclean’s calls The Illegal “a book for our times.” In the dark fictional world of Zantoroland, bestselling, award-winning author Lawrence Hill casts a satirical eye on some of the most pressing issues of our time: race, immigration, undocumented refugees, discrimination and how the unseen and forgotten must struggle to survive.
In one of the poorest nations in the world, running means respect and riches. But when Keita Ali is targeted for his father’s outspoken political views, he escapes into Freedom State—a wealthy island nation. This is the new underground: a place where tens of thousands of people deemed to be “illegal” live below the radar of the police and government officials. Keita must keep moving in order to avoid deportation. As he trains in secret, eluding capture, the stakes keep getting higher. Soon, he is running not only for his life, but for his sister’s life, too.