What Is the What

Front Cover
Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group, Nov 13, 2007 - Fiction - 480 pages
100 Reviews

New York Times Notable Book
New York Times Bestseller


What Is the What
is the epic novel based on the life of Valentino Achak Deng who, along with thousands of other children —the so-called Lost Boys—was forced to leave his village in Sudan at the age of seven and trek hundreds of miles by foot, pursued by militias, government bombers, and wild animals, crossing the deserts of three countries to find freedom. When he finally is resettled in the United States, he finds a life full of promise, but also heartache and myriad new challenges. Moving, suspenseful, and unexpectedly funny, What Is the What is an astonishing novel that illuminates the lives of millions through one extraordinary man.

 

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3 stars
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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - mjspear - LibraryThing

A fictionalized account of Valentino Achak Deng newly arrived to Atlanta, GA from his native Sudan. Achak was part of the great Sudanese refugee movement, aka, "the Lost Boys." The book opens with ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - SqueakyChu - LibraryThing

An excellent read. This is the story of young Valentino Achak Deng, a boy who left Southern Sudan when war broke out in his home town of Mariel Bai. He literally had to run for his life as he watched ... Read full review

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Selected pages

Contents

Section 1
3
Section 2
15
Section 3
25
Section 4
34
Section 5
47
Section 6
51
Section 7
72
Section 8
77
Section 22
290
Section 23
312
Section 24
318
Section 25
324
Section 26
347
Section 27
360
Section 28
367
Section 29
409

Section 9
88
Section 10
95
Section 11
109
Section 12
137
Section 13
143
Section 14
149
Section 15
161
Section 16
186
Section 17
213
Section 18
231
Section 19
240
Section 20
256
Section 21
288
Section 30
411
Section 31
469
Section 32
479
Section 33
484
Section 34
491
Section 35
495
Section 36
514
Section 37
533
Section 38
537
Section 39
539
Section 40
541
Copyright

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About the author (2007)

Dave Eggers is the author of three previous books, A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius, You Shall Know Our Velocity!, and How We Are Hungry. He is the editor of McSweeney’s, a quarterly magazine and book-publishing company, and is cofounder of 826 Valencia, a network of nonprofit writing and tutoring centers for young people. His interest in oral history led to his 2004 cofounding of Voice of Witness, a nonprofit series of books that use oral history to illuminate human rights crises around the world. As a journalist, his work has appeared in The New Yorker, Esquire, and The Believer. He lives in the San Francisco Bay area with his wife and daughter.


From the Trade Paperback edition.

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