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One Day the Soldiers Came: Voices of Children in War 1st Edition

4.8 out of 5 stars 4 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0061463150
ISBN-10: 0061240478
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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

London, working with the nonprofit organization Refugees International, interviewed child soldiers and other young people affected by ethnic conflict in Africa, Burma and the Balkans to bring their plight to the attention of his fellow Americans. The narrative that emerges is a fine accomplishment, tying together the horrific stories of countless children against a merciless landscape of undersupplied refugee camps, belligerent authority figures and the constant threat of renewed violence. London tells of children forced into prostitution and military service, Burmese refugees unable to leave their dreary Bangkok apartments for fear of deportation and other tragic consequences of conflict; the stories are chilling and London is an able interviewer, getting children to open up by joining their soccer games and getting them to draw pictures. London began his project at age 21, and has a neophyte's penchant for self-regard and melodrama ("She is looking though her life, to some place else, some future bliss that is forever out of reach"); letting the stories speak for themselves would have bolstered their resonance. Regardless, this is a moving and important account of war's youngest victims in a region that too rarely enters the American consciousness.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

From Booklist

Today there are an estimated 300,000 child soldiers around the globe. American college student London has spoken with some of them, as well as with young war refugees in East Africa, Thailand, and the Balkans about their suffering both as targets of violence and as combatants. In eastern Congo, Xavier, 14, plays soccer in flip-flops: How many people has he killed? Karl from Kosovo, who saw his father gunned down, says, I probably won't live to be a grown-up. Patience, 14, from southern Sudan, has been raped repeatedly. Exiled in Thailand, Nicholas, 13, from Burma, has seen crucifixions, executions, abductions. London weaves together these stark individual narratives with the statistics and reports from international refugee organizations. But it is his passionate personal engagement that will get readers thinking about elemental issues, especially when he stops himself from dangerous, ridiculous, greeting-card idealization and confronts the truth: the image of childhood innocence is for the wealthy and the safe. Rochman, Hazel
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 304 pages
  • Publisher: Harper Perennial; 1 edition (October 16, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0061240478
  • ISBN-13: 978-0061463150
  • Product Dimensions: 5.3 x 0.7 x 8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 9.1 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,480,011 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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By Anya on October 21, 2007
Format: Paperback
Charles London has written a compelling and disturbing book speaking for children who are victims of wars created by the adults around them. His writing style is engaging and the children's stories are clearly told. This book is an important read for anyone who cares about children and their place in the world.
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Format: Paperback
A good basic read around some of the worlds most current conflicts (Burma, Bosnia, Congo), with some basic history that the world hasn't changed that much since roman times. I would recommend it as an introduction to how war affects children and their families and some of the history of what these conflicts have been based around.

It has made me want to improve my world histroy further as I'm not sure too many people have a grip on the actual vs what the general media feeds us.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I was looking for a book about the experiences of children during wartime and found this on Amazon. It was exactly what I was looking for. London's writing was empathetic, engaging and respectful of what the kids had to say. He was honest about what he learned and the preconceptions he was forced to abandon along the way. I liked that he went to war zones on three separate continents and reported stories from wars both well known (Bosnia) and not so well known (the Congo). Moving and insightful. Highly recommended.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I bought this book for a project in graduate school. Of all the books I read during the 2-year program, this was my favorite. It is amazingly touching and full of all sorts of emotions. The center section with pictures and drawings really makes the stories come alive. I would love to meet the author and talk about his work even more.

Just be aware, this is not a novel, nor would I recommend it for anyone with a weak stomach or anyone under 18 years old. The stories can be very intense!
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