When the rebels come to Obinna's village, they do more than wreak terror for one night. Lining the children up in the middle of the village, they measure them against the height of an AK-47. Those who are shorter than the gun are left behind. Those who are taller are taken. Obinna and his older brother Akot find themselves the rebel army's newest recruits.
But while Akot almost willingly surrenders to the training, Obinna resists, determined not to be warped by the revolution's slogans and violence. In the face of his vicious captain's determination to break him, Obinna finds help in a soldier called Priest, and in the power of his own dreams.
Beneath the Darkening Sky describes a life unimaginably different from our own, but one that is the experience of tens of thousands of child soldiers. Uncompromising, vivid and raw, it is an astonishing portrait of a mind trying to make sense of a senseless world.
Majok Tulba himself was shorter than the AK-47, and came to Australia from South Sudan as a refugee in 2001. This is the story of what might have happened to him had he been an inch taller.
About the Author
Majok Tulba lives in Western Sydney with his wife and children. He is CEO of the charity SudanCare; has had a film as a finalist at Tropfest; and has won a NSW Premier's/ CAL Literary Centre Fellowship.
For Ages: 11 - 14 years old
For Grades: 7 - 9
Number Of Pages: 256
Published: 2nd July 2012
Publisher: Penguin Books Australia
Country of Publication: AU
Dimensions (cm): 23.0 x 15.3
Weight (kg): 0.31
Edition Number: 1