Auma is racing toward her dreams as fast as possible--but can she turn her back on her family when tragedy hits home? This acclaimed debut set in 1980s Kenya is a poignant story of loss, grief, and the power of resilience.
A track scholarship could put thirteen-year-old Auma one step closer to leaving her small village in Kenya. She is determined to become a doctor, and nothing--not her classmates, not her marrying age, and not the night runners who come by the house while she sleeps--will stop her.
But then a strange new sickness called AIDS starts ravaging the town, eventually spreading to her own father. How can she think of leaving when her mother and siblings need her? Determined Auma finds herself in a different kind of race: to find out if there's a cure and protect her family, all while keeping a hold on her dreams.
Based on the author's childhood in Kenya, Auma's story humanizes the AIDS epidemic and reveals hope amidst a devastating health crisis. Paperback edition includes a reading guide at the back!
About the Author
Eucabeth Odhiambo is a professor of education at Shippensburg University in Pennsylvania. As a classroom teacher she has taught every grade between kindergarten and middle school. This is her first novel, inspired by her experience growing up in Kenya in the '80s and '90s, as well as HIV/AIDS education research for her doctoral degree.
★ "A hard-hitting story of a resilient and intelligent girl who bravely confronts a devastating health crisis."―Publishers Weekly,Starred Review
★ "In Auma, Odhiambo draws from her own experiences of growing up in Kenya during the beginning of the AIDS crisis to present a strong, intelligent protagonist who questions and refuses to give in to what is normally accepted. Auma treats readers to beautiful descriptions of the world around her but also gives them a candid look at the fear and superstition surrounding AIDs in its early days in Kenya as well as the grief of loss. . . . Honestly told, Auma's tale humanizes and contextualizes the AIDs experience in Kenya without sensationalizing it."―Kirkus Review, Starred Review
★ "This moving testament to the power of determination to overcome overwhelming odds is a recommended purchase for all libraries."―School Library Journal, Starred Review
"In prose as forthright as Auma herself, Eucabeth Odhiambo tells a story of resilience and strength. Odhiambo, who grew up in Kenya in the '80s and '90s, saw the effects of the disease first hand; this experience plus her work with HIV/AIDs orphans helps her give life to the authentic and realistic character of Auma―a young woman to believe in―and to put a human face on the epidemic that still affects Kenya."—Shelf Awareness
"In Auma's Long Run, Eucabeth Odhiambo shares an unflinching look at the AIDS epidemic's impact on one Kenyan village and introduces readers to a determined heroine with a commitment to knowledge and a fierce dedication to her family. This is a powerful book that will spark important conversations."―Kate Messner, author of The Exact Location of Home and The Seventh Wish
"A heartfelt story of loss and sacrifice, dreams and resilience."―Vaunda Micheaux Nelson, author of Coretta Scott King Honoree No Crystal Stair