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Brother's Keeper



by
Julie Lee

Edition
Hardcover edition
Publisher
Holiday House
Imprint
Print
ISBN
9780823444946
POTENTIALLY SENSITIVE AREAS
Language: Racial or Ethnic Epithet/Slur , Violence: War/Harsh Realities of War , Discrimination: Sexism
$14.00
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North Korea. December, 1950.
Twelve-year-old Sora and her family live under an iron set of rules: No travel without a permit. No criticism of the government. No absences from Communist meetings. Wear red. Hang pictures of the Great Leader. Don’t trust your neighbors. Don’t speak your mind. You are being watched.

But war is coming, war between North and South Korea, between the Soviets and the Americans. War causes chaos—and war is the perfect time to escape. The plan is simple: Sora and her family will walk hundreds of miles to the South Korean city of Busan from their tiny mountain village. They just need to avoid napalm, frostbite, border guards, and enemy soldiers.

But they can’t. And when an incendiary bombing changes everything, Sora and her little brother Young will have to get to Busan on their own. Can a twelve-year-old girl and her eight-year-old brother survive three hundred miles of warzone in winter?

POTENTIALLY SENSITIVE AREAS
Language: Racial or Ethnic Epithet/Slur , Violence: War/Harsh Realities of War , Discrimination: Sexism

Details

Format

Print

Page Count

320

Trim Size

8 3/10" x 5 1/2"

Dewey

F

AR

4.7: points 9

Genre

Fiction

Scholastic Reading Counts

0

JLG Release

Nov 2020

Book Genres

Fiction

Topics

Family life. Brothers and sisters. Mothers and daughters. Refugees. Korean War (1950–1953). Twentieth-century North Korean history.

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Cover Art

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Praise & Reviews

Starred or favorable reviews have been received from these periodicals:

School Library Journal*

School Library Journal

A harrowing, heartbreaking tale of hope, love, and survival against insurmountable odds. Twelve-year-old Sora and her family live under the oppressive North Korean communist regime of 1950. As the South Korean army begins to lose ground to the Red Army, hope of liberation dwindles. Sora’s stubborn, overbearing mother believes the family should keep their heads down and obey the law. But her father knows that their family’s nonconformist political and religious beliefs mean they will never be safe, and convinces the family to flee south to Busan where his brother lives. Whip-smart Sora hopes that Busan will provide freedom from her mother’s restrictive expectations of her as a woman and enable her to return to school. The family embarks upon the long journey by foot, but are separated in a sudden aerial bombardment. Sora and her eight-year-old brother Youngsoo must now attempt to complete the journey alone in hopes of reuniting with their family. They face threats at every turn—the elements, other people, lack of resources, and illness—but their strength carries them even as Youngsoo becomes ill. With an artful and expressive narrative voice, and inspiration drawn from her mother’s experiences in Korea as a young woman, debut novelist Lee enthralls and enlightens. A surefire recommendation all around, this title will be of particular interest to readers seeking excellent historical fiction, survival stories, family drama, or a good tearjerker. Librarians and teachers should be aware that a character suffers a protracted illness and then dies from pneumonia.

Praise & Reviews

School Library Journal

A harrowing, heartbreaking tale of hope, love, and survival against insurmountable odds. Twelve-year-old Sora and her family live under the oppressive North Korean communist regime of 1950. As the South Korean army begins to lose ground to the Red Army, hope of liberation dwindles. Sora’s stubborn, overbearing mother believes the family should keep their heads down and obey the law. But her father knows that their family’s nonconformist political and religious beliefs mean they will never be safe, and convinces the family to flee south to Busan where his brother lives. Whip-smart Sora hopes that Busan will provide freedom from her mother’s restrictive expectations of her as a woman and enable her to return to school. The family embarks upon the long journey by foot, but are separated in a sudden aerial bombardment. Sora and her eight-year-old brother Youngsoo must now attempt to complete the journey alone in hopes of reuniting with their family. They face threats at every turn—the elements, other people, lack of resources, and illness—but their strength carries them even as Youngsoo becomes ill. With an artful and expressive narrative voice, and inspiration drawn from her mother’s experiences in Korea as a young woman, debut novelist Lee enthralls and enlightens. A surefire recommendation all around, this title will be of particular interest to readers seeking excellent historical fiction, survival stories, family drama, or a good tearjerker. Librarians and teachers should be aware that a character suffers a protracted illness and then dies from pneumonia.

Grades 5-8
Realistic Fiction Middle Plus
For Grades 5-8

Stories with strong, relatable characters that portray believable contemporary or historical real-life experiences.

14 books per Year
$235.90 per Year
Interests
Chapter Books/Novels,Diversity,Fiction,History,Realistic Fiction
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Grades 5-8
Realistic Fiction Middle Plus
14 books per Year
$235.90 per Year

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