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Escape Under the Forever Sky Hardcover – Bargain Price, April 15, 2009
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From School Library Journal
Grade 5–8—Chafing at the restrictions of being the American ambassador's daughter, 13-year-old Lucy sneaks out to the market in Addis Ababa, is kidnapped by drug dealers, and escapes into the Ethiopian bush where she faces a pride of lions. Based on a widely circulated news story of a kidnapping and lion rescue, this unusual adventure places a reassuringly typical American teenager in an intriguingly different setting. Bored by endless rounds of official visits and restricted to the American compound when not in her elite private school, Lucy whiles away her time reading books about African wildlife, dreams of her twice-monthly visits to a game park, and schemes ways to avoid her protectors. The first-person narrative includes flashbacks that reveal something of Lucy's life prior to the kidnapping. Caught up in the suspense, readers will probably accept how much Lucy's gymnastics training and naturalist reading contribute to her survival, as well as the coincidence of her ending up at the village home of a classmate. First-time novelist Yohalem researched her story with a visit to Ethiopia and her reportage may leave readers, like Lucy, wanting to know more about that world.—Kathleen Isaacs, Towson University, MD
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Teens itching to read about life on another continent will relish Yohalem’s exciting debut novel set in Africa. Lucy Hoffman’s mom is the U.S. ambassador to Ethiopia, so Lucy lives and attends high school in the capital city of Addis Ababa. Unfortunately, Lucy’s overprotective mother won’t let her out of the house, which means no game drives or hanging out with her friends at the local ice-cream parlor. Frustrated and resentful, Lucy and a friend sneak out of the house and head into the city. The plot quickens when Lucy is kidnapped and held for ransom. Isolated and without shoes, Lucy plans an escape using her knowledge of the African wilderness. Loosely based on a true story, Yohalem’s tale weaves together the beauty of the African wildlife with the harsh realities of a poor and unstable region. Scenes depicting Lucy’s resourcefulness are riveting, and the author’s descriptions of Ethiopian culture will pique young readers’ curiosity about life abroad. Grades 5-8. --Kimberly Garnick
Top customer reviews
It was so good I couldn't help but read ahead of my class!😜