Every Falling Star, the first book to portray contemporary North Korea to a young audience, is the intense memoir of a North Korean boy named Sungju who is forced at age twelve to live on the streets and fend for himself. To survive, Sungju creates a gang and lives by thieving, fighting, begging, and stealing rides on cargo trains. Sungju richly re-creates his scabrous story, depicting what it was like for a boy alone to create a new family with his gang, his “brothers”; to be hungry and to fear arrest, imprisonment, and even execution. This riveting memoir allows young readers to learn about other cultures where freedoms they take for granted do not exist.
An Indies Introduce Selection of the American Booksellers Association.
A Junior Library Guild Selection
2016 Parent’s Choice Award winner
2016 Freeman Award, Young Adult Literature
2016 Cyblis Award Winner
2017 CBC Notable Social Studies Trade Books for Young People
2017 Notable Books for a Global Society
2018 Sakura Medal, nominee
Filmed optioned by Patrick Aiello of Big Wheel Entertainment
“This superb biography is a devastating account of survival amidst the dark and famine-stricken towns and cities along the Chinese–North Korean border.” - American Booksellers Association
A “page-turner of a memoir” and a “fast-paced story” Kirkus.
The astounding story of one girl’s journey from war victim to UNICEF Special Representative.
As a child in a small rural village in Sierra Leone, Mariatu Kamara lived peacefully surrounded by family and friends. Rumors of rebel attacks were no more than a distant worry. See more...
“… honest, raw and powerful …”
—School Library Journal, *starred review, 11/08
“... this book will unsettle readers—and then inspire them ...”—Publishers Weekly, *starred review, 11/17/08
“… a story told with equal measures of compassion and detachment that allows the reader to be both shocked and locked in. It’s good, really good. Highly recommended.”
—CM Magazine, 11/08
“... absolutely compelling, not to mention gut-wrenching …”
—Quill & Quire, 12/08
“... never less than rivetting and is notable for its emontional honesty.”
—Globe & Mail, 02/09
“Have the courage to read this book and listen to a clear, honest voice from the shadows and darkness that dissolve humanity.”
— Ha Jin, Pen/Faulkner Award winner, Stars Between the Sun and Moon
“… a powerful commentary on one of the many costs of wars. An essential purchase …”
—Kirkus, *starred review, Bite of the Mango
Recognition for Bite of the Mango
2014 The Bite of the Mango, YALSA’s list of Popular Paperbacks for Young Adults.
2011 Red Maple Award, winner, Ontario Library Association
2009 Selected as one of The White Ravens outstanding new international books of the year, Munich, Germany
2009 Silver Award Winner, Nautilus Book Awards
2009 Short-listed for the American Library Association non-fiction, young adult book of the year
Two time Amnesty International Media Award recipient for excellence in reporting on Human Rights issues.