One Day the Soldiers Came: Voices of Children in War (P.S. Series)

Overview

Today, in violence-torn regions across the globe, 20 million children have been uprooted, orphaned, or injured by war, famine, and poverty. This is their story . . . and ours.

In this powerful and unforgettable book—by turns painful, funny, terrifying, and triumphant—Charles London takes us into the world of refugee children, celebrating their unique skills for survival and reflection. Their remarkable stories and drawings chill the blood and touch the heart, offering an ...

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One Day the Soldiers Came: Voices of Children in War (P.S. Series)

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Overview

Today, in violence-torn regions across the globe, 20 million children have been uprooted, orphaned, or injured by war, famine, and poverty. This is their story . . . and ours.

In this powerful and unforgettable book—by turns painful, funny, terrifying, and triumphant—Charles London takes us into the world of refugee children, celebrating their unique skills for survival and reflection. Their remarkable stories and drawings chill the blood and touch the heart, offering an indelible, first hand portrait of the war that rages beyond the headlines.

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Editorial Reviews

New York Post
“Shining a light on the horrors inflicted on those most vulnerable is noble work.”
Ishmael Beah
“A profound and deeply moving journey into the minds of children who live with war.”
Ambassador - Richard Holbrooke
"Charles London brings an uncomfortable truth to life. This book is often difficult reading, but attention must be paid."
Ben Fountain
"The stories told by these children...are essential to our humanity..."
Elizabeth Gilbert
“An unblinking account of a peculiar human reality...a wise and captivating story.”
Ambassador Richard Holbrooke
“Charles London brings an uncomfortable truth to life. This book is often difficult reading, but attention must be paid.”
—Ben Fountain
“The stories told by these children...are essential to our humanity...”
--Ben Fountain
“The stories told by these children...are essential to our humanity...”
Baltimore Times
“It is London’s sincerity, discernment, feelings, and penchant for analysis that are always on display...Children as well as adults should read this book.”
Booklist
“[London’s] passionate personal engagement will get readers thinking about elemental issues...”
Booklist
“[London’s] passionate personal engagement will get readers thinking about elemental issues...”
Baltimore Times
“It is London’s sincerity, discernment, feelings, and penchant for analysis that are always on display...Children as well as adults should read this book.”
Kirkus Reviews
Eye-opening expose on the permanently scarred children of war in "situations where violence and hardship are the norm."As a 21-year-old research associate for Refugees International, young-adult advocate London began his five-year immersion in the international world of refugee youth and child militia in East Africa, Thailand and the Balkans, barely scratching the surface of the estimated 20 million uprooted refugee children worldwide. London played soccer with teenaged "demobilized child soldiers" in the Eastern Democratic Republic of Congo and with children in Kosovo, who describe the bloodshed surrounding them in grisly detail via drawings and interviews. Though each of the children London profiles is unique, there are many commonalities in their experiences. From Bosnia to Gaza, children have been positioned as political pawns in modern warfare for centuries. The chapters form a grim tapestry made up of what London calls the "protagonists" in wars. Paul, kidnapped into the Congo militia after a violent raid on his village, painfully regrets his time in the army and longs for education; Keto, a highly intelligent, self-confident Congolese boy in a Christian Outreach refugee camp, draws pictures and speaks plainly about his mother's death from AIDS. Many more were forced to watch their families be executed or-like "Charity," "Rebecca," "Hope," etc.-devoid of any adult supervision, subjected to physical and sexual exploitation (i.e., bartered marriage in exchange for heads of cattle). A long list of Thai and Tanzanian children, no families or future to speak of, discuss in sorrowful detail the complexities of living under the radar of their country's warring factions. Thankfully, Londonoffers positive updates on several of the youth. But readers will never forget the physical and mental damage inflicted upon their developing minds. Never sentimental or patronizing, these are harsh, numbing experiences. Searing and heartbreaking. Agent: Robert Guinsler/Sterling Lord Literistic Inc.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780061240478
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Publication date: 10/16/2007
  • Series: P.S. Series
  • Pages: 304
  • Sales rank: 1,448,819
  • Product dimensions: 5.31 (w) x 8.00 (h) x 0.68 (d)

Meet the Author

Charles London is a former research associate with Refugees International and director of curriculum for War Kids Relief, a peace-building organization. He is the 1999 winner of the Rolling Stone College Journalism Award, and his work has appeared in the New York Times Magazine, O, The Oprah Magazine, and other national publications. He has been a young-adult librarian for the New York Public Library and is the author of One Day the Soldiers Came: Voices of Children in War. He lives in New York City.

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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Posted April 27, 2009

    More than just a news story

    London's book is not a mournful nor sentimental way of telling another story. He gives the reader a personal level relationship with the children he has come to know so well and by doing so, these children are not just another news story. He provides insightful information while bringing attention to a growing problem of the world. It is disturbing to read because of how true it is. A must read for everyone!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
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