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Running for My Life: One Lost Boy's Journey from the Killing Fields of Sudan to the Olympic Games Hardcover – July 17, 2012

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Thomas Nelson; 1 edition (July 17, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1595555153
  • ISBN-13: 978-1595555151
  • Product Dimensions: 9.1 x 5.9 x 1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (413 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #49,312 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews


"The story of a former Lost Boy of Sudan is really a journey, one that takes Lopez Lomong from his life as a 6-year-old boy in a refugee camp to a whole new world as a teen in the United States. How he gets to America is an amazing story, but even more amazing are the new wonders and possibilities of his new life here. Brandon Hirsch’s narration focuses on all the emotions of the loquacious Lopez—especially fear, incredulity, and pride. As Lopez—an exceptional athlete and a devout Catholic—writes of his struggles and accomplishments, Hirsch’s narration is always right there with him. As a team, they’re like two runners on an even pace around a track, never breaking stride and waiting for that final kick." 
M.B. © AudioFile Portland, Maine
--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

About the Author

Lopez Lomong was born in Kimotong, a small village in southern Sudan, in 1985. Taken by rebel soldiers from the Sudan People’s Liberation Army at age 6, Lomong embarked on the long journey from refugee camps to the world’s largest athletic stage—the Olympics. Founder of the Lopez Lomong Foundation, Lomong spends each day working to improve the lives of children in his homeland.

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Customer Reviews

I highly recommend this book to anyone who can read!!
Elizabeth Moniz
Running for My Life by Lopez Lomong is a book written by a lost boy of the Sudan who was kidnapped from a church service at age 6 by rebels.
V. L. Frania
Running For My Life by Lopez Lomong is an amazing story of courage, determination and faith.
Jill Foley

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

53 of 57 people found the following review helpful By Alexis K. Wisniewski on July 9, 2012
Format: Hardcover
When Lopez Lomong was water baptized in a refuge camp in Kenya as a teenager, his name was changed from Lopepe to Joseph, and although he continues to use his childhood nickname, Lopez, this man is a modern-day Joseph in almost every way.

Kidnapped from his mother's arms by Sudanese rebels who raided his church at the age of six, Lopez saw death up-close before most children can grasp of the concept.
The story of his escape from the rebel prison camp is electrifying and inspiring. He compares it with the apostle Peter's miraculous escape from prison, and rightly so.

When Lopez didn't make it back to his village, he found himself in a Kenyan refuge camp, where he lived for almost a decade. Woven through a heart-breaking description of growing up in the camp, Lopez somehow finds renewed faith in God and learns valuable life lessons that shape him into a very special young man.

One thing he learned to do well was run.
As the camp grew, the number of boys who wanted to play soccer every day became difficult to manage, so the older boys made a rule: Everyone had to run one lap around the camp before he could report to the soccer field. The first ones back would be the first ones to play. One lap around the camp was 33 kilometers - about 18 miles.

One day at the camp, a U.N. worker announced that a program had been set up to send 3500 boys to live in America. Catholic Charities had organized a foster care program that would place the "lost boys of Sudan" with families in America. Lopez offered himself to God, and God accepted by sending him to live with a family in New York.
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24 of 24 people found the following review helpful By B. Crounse on July 10, 2012
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This would be a great story if it were fiction. The fact that it is real just makes it that much more compelling.

I bought this book for me, because I am a runner and have spent some time in East Africa. However, I haven't even read the whole book yet. My wife seized it, read it in a day, and has been reading excerpts to my children, who are also captivated by the story. I read 2 chapters tonight to my seven year old son, who was begging for me to go on. I am really looking forward to reading the bits I've so far missed!

Lomong's story has tragedy, hope, triumph, and humor- his stories about some of his first experiences in the US are simply hilarious.

Lopez Lomong is among that class of young Africans like Meb Keflezighi (Run to Overcome), Valentino Deng (What is the What, by Dave Eggers), and William Kamkwamba (The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind) who have compelling life stories (and books), and who will (I hope) continue to make the world a better place.

Read this book!
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Imagine Studios on July 10, 2012
Format: Hardcover
Running for my Life shares the true story of Lopez Lomong, now a U.S. Olympic Athlete. When the story opens though, Lopez was a young boy ripped from his family by rebel soldiers. The path he takes is hard. So, so hard, it is almost hard to fathom the amount of Lost Boys stuck in the same situation. After a miraculous series of events, Lopez ended up in a refuge camp where he had the opportunity to be baptized - during the service he was given a new name, Joseph. Without a doubt, Lopez epitomized the character of Joseph from the Old Testament.

His journey to the States was depicted with so many details, I could feel the confusion over how things worked and our overwhelming wealth compared to Sudan. Seeing 9-11 through this boys eyes was an interesting, heartbreaking view.

Personally, I was deeply touched by the needs of not only Lopez, but the rest of the boys left behind.....not to mention all the boys and girls stuck in orphanages and the foster care system. Rob and Barbara Rogers, the family that God used to change the life of Lopez, continued to give - ultimately welcoming more boys into their home, and lives.

God's hand was clearly on the sequence of events in his life, (and in turn ours) This is such a faith building book - but more than that, it inspired me to take a good look around at all I have. Thank God for the blessings, but then do more - like the examples of the Rogers. (and Lopez himself as he continues to use his newfound wealth to give back to his country)

Wonderful book...and I am looking forward to cheering Lopez on in the upcoming 2012 Olympics!
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Emily in Texas on June 28, 2012
Format: Hardcover
This is God's story, and He wants it told: Lopez Lomong qualified for the 2012 London Olympics tonight by placing third in the 5000 meter race at the U.S. track and field trials. He will be proudly wearing the uniform for the United States, the country that gave him a second chance at life. When Lopez was six years-old, he was kidnapped by rebel soldiers in his native South Sudan and imprisoned. Miraculously, he escaped to Kenya where he spent the next ten years as an orphan (he had no idea if his parents were alive) in a refugee camp where the conditions in which he lived seemed hopeless and desperate. By contrast, Lopez remained filled with hope and the pragmatism necessary to thrive in this environment. Drawing upon the faithfulness of a loving God taught to him by his parents, he was certain that God had important plans for him. Running for My Life is Lopez's story of his journey to America and eventual trip to the 2008 Beijing Olympics as a 1500 meter runner. His sharing his story with the world is truly a gift. This book is not only nearly impossible to put down, I believe it will be life-changing for many that read it. My spirit was encouraged, and I have been challenged by the abundance in my life compared to what refugees around the world live without. I am eager to help those hurting in South Sudan; you'll likely be, too, after you read this book. Lopez also has a blog at There, you'll learn about opportunities to help this cause.
I was given a copy of Running for My Life by Thomas Nelson publishers in exchange for an honest review.
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