A Long Walk To Water

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Modern Age

A Long Walk to Water: Based on a True Story
Author: Park, Linda Sue
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Time Period: Modern Age
Time Frame: 1985-2009
Geographic Area: Africa
Country: Sudan
Topics: Sudanese Civil War
Genre: Fiction
Reading Age: Middle Grade, Upper Middle Grade
Format: Chapter Book
Published: 2011

World History > Modern Age > 1980s

Cherished by millions of readers, this #1 New York Times best-selling novel is a powerful tale of perseverance and hope. Newbery Medalist Linda Sue Park interweaves the stories of two Sudanese children who overcome mortal dangers to improve their lives and the lives of others.

A Long Walk to Water begins as two stories, told in alternating sections, about two eleven-year-olds in Sudan, a girl in 2008 and a boy in 1985. The girl, Nya, is fetching water from a pond that is two hours’ walk from her home: she makes two trips to the pond every day. The boy, Salva, becomes one of the “lost boys” of Sudan, refugees who cover the African continent on foot as they search for their families and for a safe place to stay. Enduring every hardship from loneliness to attack by armed rebels to contact with killer lions and crocodiles, Salva is a survivor, and his story goes on to intersect with Nya’s in an astonishing and moving way. Includes an afterword by author Linda Sue Park and the real-life Salva Dut, on whom the novel is based, and who went on to found Water for South Sudan.

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