Elephant Run. Roland Smith. 2007. Hyperion. 336 pages.
When Nick Freestone was young, he and his mother lived on a farm in Kansas.
Historical fiction. Set in Burma during World War II. When Nick Freestone's mother becomes concerned about her son's safety--the bombing of London by the Nazis--she sends her son to Burma, to his father. Nick hasn't seen in his father in years, hasn't been on his father's plantations, in years.
Nick's arrival comes just days before Japan invades Burma. He's barely had time to settle in, barely had time to tour the plantation, before the danger becomes all too real. His father hurriedly makes plans to send his son to India--in an attempt once again to get him out of danger--but these plans fail. His father is captured. And Nick becomes a servant, a prisoner to the Colonel who has taken his father's plantation. But he's not alone.
I really enjoyed this one. I found it a compelling read. It was fascinating to read about World War II from this perspective. The novel has a diverse cast of characters--British, Burmese, Japanese, etc. It was easy for me to love Nick, Mya, and Hilltop. I also thought Smith did a great job with Sergeant Sonji and Colonel Nagayoshi.
Not everyone likes reading about war, but I thought Smith did a great job in making this a very human story.
© Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews
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