Auma's Long Run

Pub Date   |   Archive Date 31 Aug 2017

Member Reviews

Young adult novels about kids from different cultures lend themselves to teaching the writing of comparison contrast essays. Depending on the students’ level of sophistication, the essay can range from a simple four paragraph essay to a fully developed paper, where each topic is explored in great detail. As students are reading their novel, they should be noting similarities and differences between their own culture and the culture represented in the book. This month I am recommending three books that would lend themselves to this project. Auma's Long Run by Ecabeth Odhiambo chronicles the story of a young girl growing up during the AIDS crisis in Kenya. You Bring the Distant Near by...

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This is the book I have been waiting for. A few years ago I was disappointed by a book that promised to show the hardships African girls have to face in order to receive an education. This has everything that I expected from that much-lauded book and more. Auma faces the challenges I have read about in nonfiction books about African females, but they are set in a framework that--even though there serious topics are discussed--makes it accesible for middle school students.
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What a great book! I thoroughly enjoyed it. It is written in an informative and sensitive manner. The book is set int he 1980s when very little was known about AIDS & HIV. The story is based around a Kenyan community stricken with the disease & a family who are learning to live with its consequences. The main character of Auma is trying to come to terms with growing up, wanting an education & looking after her family through an array of hard times. The book is written for a young audience but I suggest KS3 as the ideal age group. It deals with the issues of a girl in Africa growing up as well as family matters such as death. A real page turner!
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Auma is a 13-year-old girl growing up in a Luo village in Kenya at the height of the AIDS epidemic. Her family has always struggled with paying expenses, even with her dad's good job in the city. Auma dreams of getting a running scholarship to a local high school, her only chance of being able to afford higher education and avoid being trapped in marriage at a young age. Then her dad returns home one day, unscheduled, and stays in his room, growing weaker and weaker. Meanwhile, in Auma's village, more people are dying. What is causing the epidemic? Can Auma get a scholarship to continue her education? Will she be able to become a doctor one day to save her village? Auma's story is a...

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Haunting but inspirational, AUMA'S LONG RUN reminds readers that the world is bigger than what we can see, and that challenges are profoundly different throughout the world. Thanks to the publisher for the signed galley of this title provided through a giveaway.
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Heart-wrenching, tear-jerking, emotionally captivating book! I felt for Auma, I cried with Auma, and I rooted for Auma, hoping beyond hope that she could overcome unbeatable, unbearable obstacles and not only survive, but thrive. Auma's story gives paints a painfully vivid picture of and gives us insight into the AIDS-devastation that in the 1980s swept not only Auma's Kenyan village, but Africa and the world. Particularly frustrating are all the misconceptions and misinformation surrounding the epidemic in Auma's village, and the lack of information and resources to deal with it. But above all, this is a story about perseverance , determination, and hope -- hope that pushes through...

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I highly recommend Auma's Long Run by Eucabeth Odhiambo: Beautiful historical fiction about resilience, family, loss, & racing after your dreams! I am looking forward to sharing this story set in Kenya during the AIDS epidemic with my students throughout the school year and discussing it with colleagues at our staff book club in March!
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This book is set in the 1980's in Kenya where AIDS is beginning to take the lives of many who live in Auma's village. Auma, 13 years old and an amazing runner, dreams of attending high school, but when illness strikes her family she must also take on the responsibility of caring for her siblings. This will be an eye-opening book for young readers as it shows how children in another part of the world live. I was completely absorbed in Auma's story and gained some insight myself into how the AIDS epidemic was perceived by those affected by it in Africa. Although the topic is heavy, inspiration can be found in Auma's courage and determination.
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Auma loves to run. She has big dreams to win a track scholarship so she can attend high school and then maybe even become a doctor. She doesn’t want the same life as many of the other girls in her small Kenyan village who marry young and dropout of school. She’s determined to fight for something better. But when a weird new sickness called AIDS starts killing people in her village, Auma’s dreams start slipping away. She wants to do whatever she can to help her struggling family, but is giving up on her dreams the answer? I absolutely love Auma. She is so brave and determined. She knows there is more she can offer to this world than the low expectations her culture has for girls. She is...

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Eucabeth Odhiambo grew up in Kenya. While she now lives in Pennsylvania, where she teaches in the teacher education department of Shippensburg University, she returns to her home country in her debut novel, Auma's Long Run. Auma is a teenager in rural Kenya whose village is being ravaged by AIDS. She is torn between her responsibility to her family and her desire to become a doctor. In many ways, Auma is just like girls anywhere in the world. But her lifestyle is foreign to most Western readers. She has to walk to the stream to fetch water, she lives in a mud house with no electricity or indoor plumbing, and has cows in the yard. Her father works in Nairobi and sends money home...

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Auma is living a pretty fortunate life in a village in Kenya during the 1980s. Her father has a nice job in Nairobi which allows him to not only bring presents home to the family from time to time but also allows Auma and her siblings to go to school. But when he comes home unexpectedly, he is suffering from an undisclosed illness that only seems to be getting worse. Lots of people have been dying in Auma's village which furthers her desire to become a doctor and find a cure for this new disease. When her mother falls ill as well, Auma searches for a cure and is eventually left in the care of her grandmother. Thanks for Auma's running, she is able to earn a scholarship to attend high...

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Auma's Long Run transports the reader to a Kenya where people are just discovering and coming to grips with the AIDS epidemic. Auma, in contrast to most of her classmates, looks beyond a career as a farmer or wife and dreams of being a doctor. It's part of why she works to understand why so many people are dying and what can be done. The book tackles poverty, limited opportunities for women, but also celebrates family and community and perseverance. The author did a good job of putting us in that setting, so that even though it is not my own culture, I could relate. Characters are well thought out and multi faceted. Auma is not only a dutiful daughter and student but a runner and someone...

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Auma and her siblings, Juma, Musa, and Baby, live in a village where the cries of mourning are all too familiar. Many of the adults of the village are dying - but no one can understand why. Abeth, Auma's best friend, has already lost both of her parents. When their father comes home from the capital sick, their lives begin to change. They do not realize how drastic that change will one day become. School has always been a safe place for Auma and being part of the track team brings her joy. However, with so many drastic and difficult changes in her life, she must choose what is most important and strive to care for their family in this tumultuous time. When her school teacher tells them...

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Thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for providing an ARC of this book for review. This was a very good debut story, clearly written by someone who knows what she's writing about (as the author note states, she was in Kenya in the 80's during the start of the AIDS epidemic.) It's not an easy read - heartbreaking at times, but also hopeful. The characters are well written. The culture in Africa during this time period really came to life. Quite a lot to discuss if read by kids - everyone had to pay to go to school, HIV/AIDS and how it was perceived in Africa vs. here in the US/Western world, poverty/hunger and how it affects families, the pervasive misogynistic culture...the list is...

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