Sunrise over Fallujah
Author: Walter Dean Myers
Grade Level Equivalent:
Guided Reading Level:
Iraq War, African American, Death, Grief, Loss, Survival
A New York Times Notable Children's Book
Operation Iraqi Freedom, that's the code name. But Robin Perry, an ambivalent recruit from Harlem, and all his fellow soldiers in the Civil Affairs Battalion have a simpler name for it: WAR.
Perry and the rest of his unit soon find their definition of "winning" the war in Iraq ever more elusive and their good intentions being replaced by terms like "survival" and "despair."
Walter Dean Myers looks at a contemporary conflict with the same power and searing insight he brought to his Vietnam War classic, Fallen Angels.
Praise for Sunrise over Fallujah
"This is an astonishing book." — The New York Times Book Review
* "Here it is at last — the novel that will allow American teens to grapple intelligently and thoughtfully with the war in Iraq." —Publishers Weekly, starred review
* "This companion expertly evokes the beauty of Iraq and the ugliness of war. Given the paucity of works on this war, this is an important volume, covering much ground and offering much insight. Robin's eventual understanding that his experience was not about winning or losing the war but about 'reaching for the highest idea of life' makes this a worthy successor to Myers's Coretta Scott King Award-winning classic." — Kirkus Reviews, starred review
* "Myers brilliantly freeze-frames the opening months of the current Iraq War by realistically capturing its pivotal moments in 2003 and creating a vivid setting. Memorable characters share instances of wry levity that balance the story without deflecting its serious tone. Through precise, believable dialogue as the catalyst, Myers's expert portrayal of a soldier's feelings and perspectives at the onset of this controversial war allows the circumstances to speak for themselves." — School Library Journal, starred review
* "Robin takes readers behind the headlines to the everyday life of a soldier, an existence full of fear, bravery, boredom, confusion, compassion, and violence. His voice and perspective never waver from that of a young man trying to make some sense out of his tasks and his duty... the non-political approach of the novel allows readers to create their own definitions for the central word: war" — Horn Book, starred review
"...emblematic of the spare, authentic power of Myers' writing, which reveals both the universal emotions of warfare and its contemporary specifics...this offers a compelling, close-up look at a war that has raged for a large percentage of teens' lives, and together, this novel and Fallen Angels deliver a searing statement about how the lessons of history go unheeded as the fog of war envelops generation after generation." — Booklist
"Echoes of Graham Greene and Joseph Conrad reverberate through these passages as human foibles play out upon the battlefield." — Shelf Awareness