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Intimate road trip full of extraordinary meetings

When Raaf Turned Left

Evelien De Vlieger & Karst-Janneke Rogaar

Raaf has had a bad day at school and yet again his mother has disappeared. So when the bell goes, he decides not to head straight home. He turns left instead of right. It’s the start of a remarkable road trip. Without meaning to, Raaf gets further and further from his house, meeting all kinds of people along the way: a punk girl, a man who secretly lives in a warehouse, a police dog and its handler, a pizza courier and a woman with a parrot she can’t stand. Long after it gets dark, Raaf finally arrives home, and his mother is back on the scene.

Simply brilliant. A cathartic book that needs to be experienced
De Volkskrant

Evelien De Vlieger interweaves a light adventure with an underlying layer of darkness in a way that is quite extraordinary. Raaf tries to insist that his mother is on a secret mission, but he knows that’s not true. For a long time he manages to hide the anxiety he feels about his mother, who disappears for periods but always promises to come back. De Vlieger shows how the clever boy, who is full of trivial facts, tries to deal with a world that is not always predictable. Karst-Janneke Rogaar’s exceptionally atmospheric drawings in deep blue make full use of light and shadow, thereby reflecting the two components of Raaf’s journey. An exciting road trip with deep undercurrents.

An intimate story that once again demonstrates De Vlieger’s talent for interweaving emotion and humour