Friday, April 18, 2014

Book Blog Tour: Hope Runs by Claire Diaz-Ortiz and Samuel Ikua Gachagua

*****This review is meant for parents, teachers, and other people that work with children to read.*****

Sammy Ikua Gachagua became an orphan in Kenya; his father died and his mother left for work one day and didn't come home. He lived with a family member for awhile, but there were too many mouths to feed. He was given an opportunity to live in an orphanage. His life in the orphanage seems luxurious, compared to how his home life was. Claire Diaz-Ortiz and her friend Lara were traveling and ended up in Kenya. They had other plans and Claire decided to abort their plans and concentrate on discovering why they ended up at the orphanage. Sammy was one of the children at the orphanage and Claire and Lara noticed that there seemed to be something different about him. Sammy also noticed something different about Claire and Lara; they were not like most white people who came to take photographs and/or videos, stayed for a little while, and then left. They were staying for awhile and he was connecting with them. As the story goes back and forth between Sammy and Claire’s different point of views, the story also moves forward at the same time; sometimes there are two chapters back-to-back of each of their different point of views.

This book was an interesting read for me!  I often had a hard time putting it down when I needed to. I really loved reading that Sammy’s life seemed to turn around for the better when he started living in an orphanage. He seemed to like the food, and to be around the children and other people there. It sounded like a success story to me. It was interesting to me to learn that the “Hope Runs” book title name came from the ministry/organization that Claire ran. People donated shoes so that they could have shoes in Kenya. I felt like this impacted Sammy’s life because he started a shoe drive in the future, which generated many pairs of shoes to help a lot of people. It seemed like a lot of Sammy’s development came from what he learned from Claire and Lara while they were in Kenya, including his love for running. I was also impressed by Sammy’s great attitude throughout the book, and when he needed to make transitions in life.

This is a book that I believe shouldn’t be missed for people who are thinking of being involved with orphan care, and who are also thinking about or are currently hosting foreign exchange students.

My review= 5 out of 5 stars


Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Revell for this review. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.

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