Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Elephant Run (MG/YA)

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


Marg 4:27 AM  

This does sound like one that I would enjoy. I do enjoy reading about WWII (if enjoy is the right word)

Anna 7:51 AM  

I haven't read much about Burma during WWII so I'll keep this one in mind. I'll add your link to the WWII book reviews page on War Through the Generations.

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I am interested in reviewing books and audio books. This blog focuses on books written for middle grade on up (essentially 10 to a 110). I review middle grade fiction and young adult fiction (aka tween and teen).

I also review adult books.

I read in a variety of genres including realistic fiction, historical fiction, mystery, romance, science fiction, fantasy, literary fiction, and chick lit. (I've read one western to date.)

I read a few poetry books, a few short story collections, a few graphic novels, a few nonfiction books.

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  • Regency romances (including Austen prequels/sequels)
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I am more interested in strong characters, well-written, fleshed-out, human characters. Plot is secondary to me in a way. I have to care about the characters in order to care about the plot. That being said, compelling storytelling is something that I love. I love to become absorbed in what I'm reading.

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