The Book of Jonas
For much of the story the reader is left as detached from the main character as he seems to be from himself. Jonas (Younis) is a kind of ghost drifting through his new life in America trying to make sense of his present, but purposefully not of his past. There are brief interludes of memory, wisps and hints here and there of his life before (and during) the trauma he faced.
After being hospitalized for injuries incurred during the attack, Jonas consents to live with a foster family in Pittsburgh, PA and attends sessions with psychiatrist in order to work thr ...more
I wish I could recommend it.
I read this all the way through on a flight from Portland, Oregon to Chicago. It may be the first time I've ever really teared up when reading on a plane. This was a little emb ...more
And Younis fixed him with his pale green eyes and said, "What is it like not to?"
These are big questions, with no easy answers. They are the questions posed and explored in Stephen Dau's beautifully written debut novel, The Book of Jonas.
The novel opens as Younis, a 15 year old boy, is in the process of being repatriated from his war ravaged country (which is never named) to the United States. It's not clear ...more
The Book of Jonas is Stephen Dau's debut novel a powerful story of a young boy who survives an American military attack on his village in an unnamed Muslim country.
The man character Jonas, is rescued and eventually comes to the United States as a ...more
The protagonist, a young man amidst the chaos and destruction of war, becomes a symbol of what life can become if you are subjected to war's odious effect. The young man, Jonas, a muslim, witnesses the destruction of his family and ...more
He stopped and said, "Great book."
I recognized him as the author and said, "Really? I heard the author is kind of pretentious."
"Oh no," he replied. "He's nice and charming and I bet he would even sign your book. And then you could sell it on eBay for a lot of money."
So I bought the book because Stephen Dau was nice, even though the description of this novel didn't cap ...more
Fifteen-year-old Younis is injured and orphaned when a U.S. military raid gone awry hits his village in an unnamed Muslim country that resembles Afghanistan. With the aid of an international relief organization, he is sent to the U.S., where he is assigned to a well-meaning but rather clueless foster family in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. He changes his name to Jonas on the plane: “He suspects this will cause trouble; he does it anyway.”
“The Book of Jonas” (Blue ...more
The Book Of Jonas is a relatively modern novel that was written in 2012 by Stephen Dau. Dau was born in western Pennsylvania and lives in Brussels. He has worked in postwar reconstruction and international development prior. “Mostly I tend to write about America as seen through the eyes of people who don't live there,” Dau says on his website. The Book of Jonas is his first novel and primarily tells the reader about Jonas, a boy from unnamed Middle Eastern country who came to the United States a...more
Jonas, of the title, is a teenaged refugee from a war in an unnamed country that sure sounds like Afghanistan. He finds himself, “I’ll go,” in America, where he is mocked for his accent, ...more
I thoroughly enjoyed this book! The author’s way of scattering the plot is confusing at first, but it pulls the reader into each page, forcing you to keep reading. The chapters are scattered perspectives and are not in chronological order. Jonas, a Muslim boy, is orphaned in an attack on his village around preteen age. With the help of American Soldiers he is put in a program and given a foster family in America. The beginning of this book is describing his daily ...more
Fifteen-year-old Younis, is a Muslim boy who ...more
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But you are still human. Eventually, you do reflect on it. The consequences make themselves known. The results of your actions persist. Eventually, you are struck by their meaning. At some point, an accounting is made. Eventually, if you are human, and sane, you examine what you have done.”
But they told me that there was no better way to do good and help people. They told me they helped people all the time. Doing good was what they were about. Plus they were going to pay me. Where else could I get paid for helping people? Plus they would pay for my college. Plus, in addition to helping people, and paying me, and paying for my college, they would teach me a skill. I would be helping people, and seeing the world, and earning money, and having college paid for, and learning a skill that I could use later to earn money and help people.
In the end, it was a pretty easy decision.”