Publisher: Frances Lincoln Childrens Books
After a major earthquake in 1951 devastates their lives, flattening their village and killing his father, Makis and his mother are re-homed in North London. Although they join an established Greek community, they face antagonism not only from the existing British population, but also from other Greek settlers.
Ashley sympathetically shows Makis dealing with his own grief and the changes in his everyday life, but also helping his distraught mother before she becomes irrevocably isolated from life around her.
Surreptitiously he teaches her English, at the expense of his own integration into school life. His selflessness is eventually recognised, gaining him not only his rightful place in the school football team but his family heritage as a traditional musician.