Wednesday, February 16, 2011

What Is the What

Written by Dave Eggers

First line: I have no reason not to answer the door so I answer the door.

Why you should read this book: Valentino Achak Deng was seven years old when war came to his southern Sudanese village of Marial Bai, when he watched his world set ablaze and the people he knew kidnapped or murdered by government-sponsored marauders from a foreign land, when he began a long walk, along with hundreds of other boys, in search of sanctuary in Ethiopia. Through almost unbearable horror, Achak and thousands of other refugees, including thousands of Lost Boys in his age group, persevere, and while they watch their numbers dwindle through starvation, predatory animals, and continual attacks, eventually they find a kind of shelter in the Kakuma refugee camp in Kenya, and many of them, Achak included, make their way, at last to America. Even in America, Achak's troubles continue, his trusting nature leading to more heartache than it would seem conceivable for one man to suffer, but through it all, he always rebounds and regains his optimism that somehow, a brighter future awaits.

Why you shouldn't read this book: Almost unbearable horror.

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