They Poured Fire on Us From the Sky: The true story of three Lost Boys from Sudan
by Benson Deng, Alephonsion Deng, and Benjamin Ajak
You!!! Yes, You! Go read this now. It's amazing and moving and oh-so-profound. and I loved every minute of it.
Benson, Alepho, and Benjamin are three boys (Benson and Alepho are brothers, Benjamin is their cousin) that were born in Sudan. In 1987, when they were very young, ages 5 to 7, the Civil War arising in Sudan reached their village and they were forced apart from their parents, other family, and each other. They were forced to cross deserts with only the rags on their backs, no shoes, and no food or water for months. Most of the time, they were starving or injured or sick with no food or medical treatment. They lost friends and family members along their journey but never gave up hope of being reunited with their family.
Each chapter is written by one of the boys, who are all in their mid twenties at the time the book was published. The chapters go in roughly chronological order from their times in the village before war struck their lives, up until they landed in America in 2001. That's fourteen years of traveling thousands of miles on foot, of having little to no food, and living in refugee camps. The writing is simple yet eloquent and the stories really make you realize how much you had growing up, and now. I have a feeling that I'm going to be recommending this one to a lot of people. It's just a very touching story and would be SUCH a great upper high school or college classroom discussion book, so teachers definitely check this one out!!! If you want more info on this book and the authors check out http://www.theypouredfire.com/
10 out of 10 stars. Just loved it. Oh, and there's some Michigan State University love on the website since it was last year's One Book, One Community book!