I was so moved by this story. The performance of it enhanced it. I'm a fan of Eggers books and , at a time when there's so much hate and animosity toward refugees I found this illustration of the other side of this situation very important and beautifully written. I finished it a while ago but it has stayed with me and I've recommended it to friends.
To those who look for guidance while thinking that life might have dealt them a rough hand, this book could bring a sober awakening. We all need to be reminded once in a while of, in the words of the main character, the many ways in which we are blessed. And, in case we have met with misfortune beyond healing, of the manner in which others, akin to us, have carried forth with dignity. The hero of this book is so full of life and love, and generosity, that we wish we were given the chance to meet him. But that, of course, is also the voice of the author. The literary text finds in this example its true vocation. To teach humanity, to give hope, to accompany the grieving of so many of the earth's dispossessed. It is writing of monumental consequence, and at the same time accessible, reassuring, generous to all. If biblical means, a text meant to bring hope to the kind, then biblical.
This story was an awesome historical documentary of events that happened during the SALA and Red War in Sudan. The only disappointment for me was not knowing the results from Valatino's MRI headaches.
Great story. Amazing narration. I felt like I was learning about some very important tragic events, of which I knew very little, and at the same time being very entertained. Valentino's life was truly inspiring. His story had me listening attentively to find out what would happen next. I don't know how long it was but it did not matter. It never got boring.
This is the only review I have ever written and that is only because I was so impressed with this book. I bought it and let it sit in my library for months without giving it a listen because I wasn't sure it would be that interesting
Don't make the same mistake I did. Give this book listen. It is a great book
This is the most incredible book I have ever listened to. Powerfully moving, told with grace and charm... I am grateful for having accompanied Valentino Achak Deng through his journey, blessed to know his story.
Narrator Dion Graham was outstanding: The voices he gave to the various characters in this brilliant performance added tremendous color and texture, and the emotion he injected into the book's narrator's own voice truly conveyed Valentino's heart and soul.
Though I have discovered this novel as an adult, I think this should be required reading -- or listening -- for every American middle school or high school student. Sure, those years are challenging. But they are nothing compared to an escape from war-torn Sudan...
Let me just say first: I really like this book. I will also say that it was difficult to listen to, because it is so dark and relatively hopeless. Terrible things happen to the narrator almost constantly. However, I appreciated the description of how Sudan came to be Sudan. It was an interesting history lesson. The reader was above excellent. The bottom line is – – I enjoyed the book, but couldn't listen to it for long stretches, without taking some kind of break (listening to music, or whatever).
...you have to read books like this. All too often the crisis is the character. But it is always made up of human, each one of whom is a volume of life beyond knowing. But with this kind of kaleidoscopic storytelling we can glimpse, perceive, and in this case become very much enamored with, indeed even feel we've become friends with Valentino Achack Deng, a Sudanese brother to me now, a lifeline from me to the wandering souls of all the Lost Boys that every conflict creates. Egg era does a fantastic job of fleshing out this autobiography into a river like flow of nonstop torrential storytelling. And Graham brings the characters to life in your head all so warm and vividly you would swear you could see the bright African sun, or the bright moon that so often lit their horrific perambulation. The story of the Lost Boys is heart breaking, but it is completely from the whole cloth of hope s fulfilled and perseverance delivered. After this you will never read the word refugee the same way again.