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“This is a powerful story and one that will open the eyes of its readers in terms of what people are capable of, both good and bad.” –Children’s Literature

Alive in the Killing Fields

Written by Nawuth Keat and Martha Kendall
Published by National Geographic Society

Alive in the Killing Fields is the real-life memoir of Nawuth Keat, a man who survived the horrors of war-torn Cambodia. He has now broken a longtime silence in the hope that telling the truth about what happened to his people and his country will spare future generations from similar tragedy. In this captivating memoir, a young Nawuth defies the odds and survives the invasion of his homeland by the Khmer Rouge. Under the brutal reign of the dictator Pol Pot, he loses his parents, young sister, and other members of his family. After his hometown of Salatrave was overrun, Nawuth and his remaining relatives are eventually captured and enslaved by Khmer Rouge fighters. They endure physical abuse, hunger, and inhumane living conditions. But through it all, their sense of family holds them together, giving them the strength to persevere through a time when any assertion of identity is punishable by death. Nawuth’s story of survival and escape from the Killing Fields of Cambodia is also a message of hope; an inspiration to children whose worlds have been darkened by hardship and separation from loved ones. This story provides a timeless lesson in the value of human dignity and freedom for readers of all ages.

Primary ISBN: 9781426305153

Available As: Hardcover
Middle Grade, Age 12 or older

Community Represented:

Themes: , , , , , , , ,

Setting: Cambodia, Thailand

Character’s New Arrival/New American Status: Refugee

Book Creator(s) Connection to the Community Represented: Own Voices/Lived Experience

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