A Long Walk to Water

Linda Sue Park

A Long Walk to Water
University of Queensland Press
28 February 2011

A Long Walk to Water

Linda Sue Park

An unforgettable new story from the winner of the prestigious Newbery Medal Two young people, two stories, one country - Sudan. Home for just long enough to eat, Nya would now make her second trip to the pond. To the pond and back - to the pond and back - nearly a full day of walking altogether.This was Nya’s daily routine seven months a year.Daily. Every single day.Salva ran until he could not run anymore. Then he walked. For hours, until the sun was nearly gone from the sky.As Salva walked, the same thoughts kept going through his head in rhythm with his steps. Where are we going? Where is my family? When will I see them again?This mesmerizing dual narrative by Newbery medallist Linda Sue Park shows us that in a troubled country, determined survivors may find the future they are hoping for.


Eleven-year-old Salva was sitting in his classroom, half-listening to his teacher but thinking of home time, when the gunfire started. The students were told to run and hide in the bushes. He never got home to his family and didn’t see his village again for over 20 years.

This slimmish novel is based on the true story of Salva Dut, one of the Lost Boys of Sudan. In alternating chapters, two stories unfold: one of a boy’s terrible hardships and struggle for survival in war-time, the other of a young Sudanese village girl whose days are spent walking to collect water, till some strangers arrive to dig a well. And here the two stories meet. An eye-opening and inspiring story for 10 to 14 year olds – both good readers and less enthusiastic ones – who enjoy realistic fiction.

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