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9781616201944

Running the Rift: A Novel

Benaron, Naomi Author

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Running the Rift follows the progress of Jean Patrick Nkuba from the day he knows that running will be his life to the moment he must run to save his life. A naturally gifted athlete, he sprints over the thousand hills of Rwanda and dreams of becoming his country’s first Olympic medal winner in track. But Jean Patrick is a Tutsi in a world that has become increasingly restrictive and violent for his people. As tensions mount between the Hutu and Tutsi, he holds fast to his dream that running might deliver him, and his people, from the brutality around them.

Winner of the Bellwether Prize for Socially Engaged Fiction, Naomi Benaron has written a stunning and gorgeous novel that—through the eyes of one unforgettable boy— explores a country’s unraveling, its tentative new beginning, and the love that binds its people together.

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Review:

Amazon Best Books of the Month, January 2012: No wonder Barbara Kingsolver awarded her 2010 Bellwether Prize, given biennially to an unpublished novel that confronts social issues, to Naomi Benaron's Running the Rift. In her coming-of-age story of young Tutsi Jean Patrick Nkuba, whose extraordinary gift for distance running lands him on the path to become his country's first medalist in track, one of history's most inconceivable chapters--the Rwandan genocide--becomes intensely personal. Out of a childhood marked by loss and overshadowed by mounting Hutu-Tutsi tensions, Jean Patrick draws the strength for grueling Olympic training and the courage to run his life's most crucial race--to save himself and his family. A vividly told tale with a memorable champion at its heart. --Mari Malcolm

About the Author:

Naomi Benaron holds an MFA from Antioch University and an MS from Scripps Institution of Oceanography. She is also an Ironman triathlete. She teaches for UCLA Extension Writers’ Program, mentors for the Afghan Women’s Writing Project, and has worked extensively with genocide survivor groups in Rwanda. For more information, visit www.naomibenaron.com. Naomi Benaron is available for select speaking engagements. contact speakersbureau@workman.com.

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