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My Freedom Trip: A Child's Escape from South Korea

Overview


This deeply moving story of a child's escape in the dark of night from North Korea to South Korea is based on memories of the author's mother. Just prior to the outbreak of the Korean War, young Soo secretly crosses the 38th parallel, hoping to join her father on the other side. Because it is dangerous for more than one person to cross at a time, her mother waits behind. At every step there seems to be enemy soldiers, but the child remembers her mother's words—"Be brave, Soo!"—which continues to sustain her even...
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Jenkins, Debra Reid 1998 Hard cover First edition. New in new dust jacket. Stated 1st edition. New book. 32 p.; 0.41" x 11.42" x 8.70".

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Overview


This deeply moving story of a child's escape in the dark of night from North Korea to South Korea is based on memories of the author's mother. Just prior to the outbreak of the Korean War, young Soo secretly crosses the 38th parallel, hoping to join her father on the other side. Because it is dangerous for more than one person to cross at a time, her mother waits behind. At every step there seems to be enemy soldiers, but the child remembers her mother's words—"Be brave, Soo!"—which continues to sustain her even years later. In spare and elegant prose, the authors tell a story of a young girl's faith and courage. Lustrous oil paintings capture precious moments when the family is together as well as the frightening danger of the journey in this NCSS/CBC Notable Social Studies Trade Book.

The story of a young girl's escape from North Korea, based on the life of the authors' mother.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

"Remarkable tale of a young Korean girl's escape. . . . This touching tale of quiet bravery has universal appeal. --Kirkus Reviews

"The riveting plot and courageous heroine will sweep readers along. . . . A subject not often addressed in picture books." --Publishers Weekly

Children's Literature - Alexandria LaFaye
Telling the story of their mother's heroic and heartbreaking escape from North Korea just before the Korean War, the Parks provide young readers with a touching, human look at an often overlooked part of history. Told in richly textured prose, the story follows a young girl and her guide as they try to cross the border into South Korea without getting caught. The child narrowly escapes and must leave her mother behind. This moving story is given great depth by Jenkins' evocative paintings.
Children's Literature - Mary Quattlebaum
The Park sisters recall a home rich with the childhood memories of their mother. One haunting story inspired their first collaboration; My Freedom Trip is the fictionalized tale of their mother's escape as a child from North Korea. They wanted to write a book that honored their mother and celebrated their Asian roots, and their collaboration garnered a prestigious Children's Book Award from the International Reading Association.
Kirkus Reviews
The phenomenal but often unnoticed heroism of many recent immigrants' journeys to freedom is recorded in this remarkable tale of a young Korean girl's escape. After Korea has been divided in half, many of the families in the north escape to South Korea. In Soo's school, many of her classmates have already disappeared. Finally one night, Soo's father goes too, with a promise to come back for his daughter and wife. When many nights of waiting and wondering have passed, it's finally time for Soo to go; after a long train ride and a hike through the forest, only a river lies between Soo and her father. But that's also where a North Korean guard finds Soo and her guide. Though Soo makes it to freedom, war breaks out before her mother is able to leave and the family is never reunited. The illustrations are impressionistic and warm, reflecting Soo's dangerous trip and the once-bright security of her family. Despite the devastating ending, this touching tale of quiet bravery has universal appeal. (Picture book. 5-8)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781563974687
  • Publisher: Highlights Press
  • Publication date: 9/28/1998
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 32
  • Age range: 7 - 8 Years
  • Lexile: 510L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 8.60 (w) x 11.00 (h) x 0.40 (d)

Meet the Author

Frances Park and Ginger Park are sisters who both live near Washington D.C., where they own a shop called Chocolate Chocolate. This is their first book for children. Frances is the author of an adult novel, Hotline Heaven, and she and Ginger have  a new picture book and a young adult novel forthcoming from Boyds Mills Press.

Debra Reid Jenkins is a nationally recognized fine artist who lives in Lowell, Michigan. She has illustrated two books for children, I See the Moon, and I Wanted to Know All about God. This is her first book for Boyds Mills Press.

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