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Trapped in an enemy tunnel,

a young refugee experiences the Korean War firsthand

in this searing story of survival, loss, and hope,

a companion to the Freeman Award-winning novel Brother's Keeper.

Myung-gi knows war is coming: war between North and South Korea. Life in communist North Korea has become more and more unbearable--there is no freedom of speech, movement, association, or thought--and his parents have been carefully planning the family's escape.

But when his father is abducted by the secret police, all those plans fall apart. How can Myung-gi leave North Korea without his dad? Especially when he believes that the abduction was his fault?

Set during a cataclysmic war that shaped the world we know today, this is the story of one boy's coming-of-age during a time when inhumanity, lawlessness, and terror reigned supreme. With only each other, Myung-gi, his mother, and his twelve-year-old sister Yoomee do everything they can to protect one another. But gentle, quiet, bookish Myung-gi has plans to find his father at any cost--even if it means joining the army and being sent to the front lines, where his deepest fears await him.

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 Can two children escape North Korea on their own?

North Korea, 1950. Twelve-year-old Sora Pak and her family live under an iron set of rules: No travel without a permit. No criticism of the government. No absences from Communist meetings. Don't trust your neighbors. Don't speak your mind. You are being watched.

There is no hope for escape...until war breaks out between North and South Korea. Suddenly, there is chaos, and everyone is fleeing. The Paks' plan to get to freedom is simple: they will walk hundreds of miles from their tiny mountain village to the South Korean city of Busan.

But when a bombing changes everything, Sora must get herself and her eight-year-old brother, Youngsoo, to South Korea alone--across rivers, over mountains, around enemy soldiers and border guards, and even through Pyongyang itself, all while staving off frostbite and starvation. Can two children survive three hundred miles of war zone in winter?

Haunting, timely, and beautiful, this harrowing novel, inspired by the experiences of the author's mother, offers readers a glimpse into a vanished time and a closed nation.

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