A Long Walk to Water by Linda Sue Park reviewed by Charlotte (Grade 7)

An inspirational story of perseverance and hope.

Salva Dut and a girl named Nya who live in South Sudan in different time periods: Salva is in1985 while Nya is in 2008. Salva is a young boy who loved his life in South Sudan until a shooting in the village, forcing everyone to run away without their family. Once lost, he finds and joins a group of people going north. Then one day, they all slept in a barn until Salva slept in and the next morning the group had left without Salva. Salva did not know what to do until an old woman came to help him for a couple of days, then they split up and Salva moved on with another group, making a friend in Marial who helps him find his uncle. Tragedy strikes once again and Salve makes his way to a refugee camp. In the refugee camp, he is desperate to find his family to no avail. He begins learning English in an attempt to go to America for a new life. Once he makes it to America he finds a new family and is ultimately successful in finding his father. Later in life, Salva goes back to South Sudan to make wells for the people in South Sudan to drink clean water.


In 2008, Nya has to walk 12 hours just to get a pitcher of water. Her family members fall ill and a doctor informs her that it is due to the unclean water. After learning to boil their water, her family heals. Salva and his group come to dig a well for her village and they are able to obtain clean water more easily.


This book is a very inspirational story and is highly recommended for people who like historical fiction, realistic fiction, and nonfiction.