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Sunrise Over Fallujah

3.71  ·  Rating details ·  4,016 ratings  ·  846 reviews
A powerful new novel about the heroics and horror of war from Walter Dean Myers, whose bestselling book FALLEN ANGELS celebrates its 20th anniversary.

Operation Iraqi Freedom, that's the code name. But the young men and women in the military's Civil Affairs Battalion have a simpler name for it: WAR.

In this new novel, Walter Dean Myers looks at a contemporary war with the sa
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Hardcover, 304 pages
Published May 1st 2008 by Scholastic Press (first published 2008)
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3.71  · 
Rating details
 ·  4,016 ratings  ·  846 reviews


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Aaron
Sep 28, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Myers has introduced the realities of war with a book that could be considered a sequel or companion to his popular novel, Fallen Angels, which presented the story of one soldier's service during the Vietnam Conflict. Instead, this newer work brings readers to Operation Iraqi feeling along with Robin (aka Birdy), an African American who was influenced by his reaction to 9/11 to surpass college for now and join the Army.

As he arrives in Kuwait just prior to the American invasion, Birdy has been a
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Philip
Dec 17, 2016 rated it really liked it
There's a blurb in the front of this book that I really agreed with: "...Given the paucity of works on this war, this is an important volume, covering much ground and offering much insight." -Kirkus Review, starred review.

That's the biggest reason I bought it and put it on my goodreads shelf, my physical shelf, and my student shelf. I've kept it pretty high on my to-read list, but there are just so many books out there.

There are a lot of war books out there - both for YA readers, and readers in
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Josiah
Mar 16, 2009 rated it really liked it
"It's hard to be brave when you can stumble across a world of hurt around any corner."

Sunrise Over Fallujah, P. 125

This book really is tremendously impactful, and the story has reverberated in my mind long after I turned the final page. The war action did not seem as intense as in its predecessor Fallen Angels, but all in all I thought that Sunrise Over Fallujah was a better story. It also taught me a great deal about the ins and outs of what is happening to our soldiers over there on the
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Carolyn
Mar 25, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: middle-grades, fiction, ya
I really liked this.

Middle-school appropriate. Really gets at both the camaraderie and the confusion of war. Rang true to all the many adult war memoirs and stories I have read. Thumbs up.
Ari
Jun 08, 2011 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-in-2011
There is little camaraderie in this novel. Birdy talks about the members of his battalion but I never got the impression that he was that chummy with anyone, except Jonesy. Jonesy was a well-developed character but everyone else mentioned (Captain Miller, Major Sessions, Ahmed, Marla) remained one dimensional. I wanted more interaction between characters and to get a grasp for their personalities. They all remained very closed-off and I don't think everyone in the army is tight-lipped, there has ...more
Ethan Benson
Oct 25, 2014 rated it really liked it
Many novels seem to describe war and its effects on those who participate in the exact same way, by showing that war is simply bloody and brutal, while not actually giving any thought to how it changes people over the course of the story. Then there are those that offer insight to the emotions and thoughts of the participants themselves, often evolving throughout. Sunrise over Fallujah, for the most part, falls into the latter category. This novel is considered to be the tie-in and companion, if ...more
Sandy
May 15, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Robin "Birdy" Perry feels compelled to leave Harlem, forego college, and join the Army in the aftermath of 9/11. He does just that--without his father's support. In Sunrise over Fallujah, the 2008 young adult novel by acclaim writer Walter Dean Myers, Birdy finds himself in Iraq and attached to a Civil Affairs unit, a group of soldiers assigned the dubious honor of testing the waters in various "hearts and mind" situations with local Iraqis conceived by higher ups who say they are intent on esta ...more
Lon
Mar 16, 2011 rated it liked it
I read this book for two reasons. First, Meyers is an influential Young Adult author, and I wanted to know if and how to recommend this book to any of my middle school students interested in war. Second, I admit that, after 8 years (and counting) of military involvement in Iraq, it's all too easy to allow the societal, moral, and political ramifications of the war recede in my consciousness. The novel helps humanize the issues and evokes in me more of an emotional response than I get from the pe ...more
Kasey
Jan 11, 2015 rated it did not like it
Recommends it for: adolescents
Recommended to Kasey by: my brother
I'm not going to lie to you, fellow reader, I struggled through this book. The language is in no way elevated, the plot is not at all complicated, and yet, I struggled. I had such a hard time reading this book, especially towards the end.
Myers is writing through an adolescent voice, and I wonder if that is why the writing is so adolescent. I also wonder how this book would have been if Myers had focused on just a few tragic events instead of SO MANY! The book was so fast paced, and the hits jus
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Sara
May 06, 2008 rated it it was ok
Shelves: war-stories
For some reason, Myers chose not to have someone edit this book, and that offends me. There are direct contradictions in action and thought within single paragraphs, not to mention descriptions, explanations, and dialogue that are repeated within just a few pages of each other. It's sloppy writing and nonexistant editing, and for someone who wrote something as good as Monster, it's inexcusable.
There are good things about the book. The main character and his unit are alternately funny, terrifyin
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Sam
Apr 21, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Sunrise Over Fallujah by Walter Dean Myers tells the story of Robin Perry, a normal guy who faces many challenges in his life. He was given the nickname "Birdy" by his loving family. Robin builds relationships throughout his adventure despite the pain all around him. Against his father’s wishes, Robin decides to go into the military over going to college. He is deployed to Iraq in 2003 during the days of fight to remove Saddam Hussein. Birdy becomes more and more delusional with the whole missio ...more
Fred
Jul 10, 2009 rated it it was amazing
I haven't read one of his books in some time, but this one makes me realize what a great author he is. This is not a book I would normally pick up, but I'm working on reading all the Tayshas books for '09-'10. However, I did read Tamarfrom this last year's Tayshas list and I liked it, too. The story follows a Civilian Affairs squad in the beginning of the Iraq war. In particular, you get to know the main character, Robin. The story really gave me some insight into what our soldiers continue to e ...more
Emily
Oct 23, 2009 added it
This book is one of my favorites because it has action that constantly keeps you on the edge of your seat. During parts of this book I cried, and in others i had a huge grin on my face. This book has many more great characteristics than bad. Anyone who reads this book will find it heartwarming and action packed.
My favorite character in this story was "Birdy," the main character. He is from New York and a member of the U.S. Army.towards the end of the book one of his friends Charles or "Jonesy,"
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Hal
Feb 07, 2012 rated it it was amazing
My wife Stacy recommended this to me last year - now I wish I had started this back then.
Walter Dean Myers did a great job of capturing the war in Iraq - I could feel the sun beating on the back of my neck and the sand worming it's way into every nook and cranny of my equipment.

The book is aimed at young adults, but it should be read by anyone who is even faintly curious about what it was like to be in Iraq in 2003, right near the beginning of the war.
War is hell, and this book doesn't flinch fr
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Jamie
Aug 10, 2008 rated it liked it
Shelves: war, 14-16
Just out of high school, Robin joins the service and is sent to Iraq. I think Myers does a good job here of teaching young readers about life during wartime Iraq, and in writing a suspenseful and compelling story. There's a little bit of repetition (women as caregivers, things happening when someone is using the bathroom) as well as Myers pet topics (Harlem and the blues) shoehorned into the story. However, it's still a compelling, contemporary war story, and I think readers will enjoy it. Inter ...more
Stephen
Jun 10, 2013 rated it really liked it
This book was more-or-less interesting. It follows a newly in listed man named Robin Perry that is assigned to a civic affairs battalion. It gives the reader a realistic taste of what it was like in Iraq for the enlisted men and women of the US Army during time of war. Robin or as people referred to him “birdy” learns lessons about life in the army. He learned that people that you are closely associated with can die in a flash and there is pretty much nothing that one can do about it. It was tou ...more
Ted
Oct 24, 2012 rated it it was ok
The book is about a solider who recently joined the army and went to Iraq. It's about what he thinks of what's going on. He descibes the things that they do. I gave it two stars as I didn't think it was that good. A lot of it's very dull and there's not much action or anything. He's in the civialian affaris unit, so they're just like searching Iraq homes. "I could feel my heart beat faster as we crossed the border into Iraq. Marla's pointing out the body bags didn't help it slow down." (Myers 42 ...more
Noah
Jun 10, 2009 rated it it was amazing
Sunrise Over Fallujah is about a young man named Robin who is based on the frontlines of Iraq. He witnesses some horrible things in Iraq that are unfortunatly real life things.
I can connect this book to Red badge of Courage because both books are about war. I an also connect this book to real life because unfortunatly these things happen in real life.
I would give this book a 5 star rating because I have an interest in books about war. I like to read books about war because you always wonder w
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Kathryn Conchado
Dec 31, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Robin Perry is an army recruit from Harlem and doesn't know why he joined the army but he is sure of one thing that is that he is headed to Iraq. He gets his name "Birdy" from the other army recruits and he didn't like them calling him that but he learns that it is a nickname. Robin and the others are supposed to interact with the Iraqi people fully. But something goes wrong and makes the Operation Iraqi Freedom name turn into a lot simpler name for it War. Will this war come to an end? Will Rob ...more
Aimee
Sep 20, 2010 rated it really liked it
An excellent YA novel about a young man, Birdy, who decides to enlist after 9/11 rather than go to college. I'm glad my nephew had to read this for school, or I never would have picked it up.

"Mama said that I shouldn't be the hero type. I don't know. Maybe you have to be a hero type to deal with the bigger things that happen to you. At least you have to be bigger than life to fit all the things inside that you didn't know you could absorb before. I never thought I would see the things I have see
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Marlon
Sep 01, 2009 rated it liked it
The character who changed the most from beginning of the book to the end is Jonesy because he was the guy that always sing the blues and he would always wish that he wanted to have a joint in town to make his own blues club and wanted everyone in the army to join but during the army, their were lots of difficult task at hand and when jonesy does his task, he is very serious and hard working at the objective. Jonesy doesn't survive the war in fallujah. Instead he sacrifice himself to save others ...more
Kimberly Lake
Mar 23, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Sunrise Over Fallujah is a fairly simple read that gives a realistic description of war, including its complexity and uncertainty. Birdy discovers many hard truths about war and being a player in this fight for democracy and peace. He does not cover his emotions for the reader and also brings in many important aspects, such as women in war and how children and civilians are affected by the war. These topics are only lightly touched on, however, leaving the reader much to think about and opportun ...more
Maureen
Sep 21, 2008 rated it it was ok
I picked this one up at the library because we buy books for a boys middle school.

9/26/08 I have to say I find this a bit slow going, perhaps because I am reading about the start of a war that is still ongoing. We may buy this just cause the boys like this author and because they can certainly benefit from some of the emotions of war's reality.

I don't plan to finish it myself, at least now.
Jason A
Apr 27, 2015 rated it liked it
I thought that Sunrise Over Fallujah, by Walter Dean Myers was overall a good read. It gives good perspective on how war affects anyone, even a civil affairs unit whose mission is to simply help people. After reading this book I now have a different perspective on war and how rough and inhumane it still is in today's society.
Telana Poe
Apr 17, 2015 rated it liked it
I was less impressed with this book after finishing Fallen Angels and having the same expectations for this one. The plot just didn't get interesting at one specific point. There were small ups and downs of the plot, but not one major scene that sticks out to the reader. I still enjoyed reading it because of the setting it was written in, but it didn't impress me in the way I was hoping for.
Art
This book was good look at the "Boots on the Ground" War in Iraq.
Great thanks to all those in the Service who have served and are serving.
Reminded me of my service days and the comradeship of the brotherhood in arms day to day life.
Robert Neilsen
Nov 17, 2016 rated it really liked it
This book is great. It really is like this book book actually happend. I recommend this book to anyone Who likes sad books but intense. This book is sad it has lots of people dying. It is a really great book.
Jadden
Apr 03, 2015 rated it really liked it
I think that this is a good book if you like to listen to people talk about war. It also move your fellings.
Stacey B.
Apr 29, 2016 rated it it was ok
Had to read for my diversity in children's literature class.
Luke W
Nov 17, 2017 rated it really liked it
Never before have I, a teenage guy, felt emotion through a military book. I have always started these types of book because I enjoy hearing about guns, explosions, the tense situations of the battlefield. Sunrise Over Fallujah is different. The point of view is that of Robin Perry, a young man that joined the military shortly after exiting high school, depicting what the military was like for the millions of young people joining the military at the time of the Iraqi war (2003-2011). That is wher ...more
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Awful 6 30 Dec 15, 2012 10:37AM  

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pseudonyms:
Stacie Williams
Stacie Johnson

Walter Dean Myers was born on August 12, 1937 in Martinsburg, West Virginia but moved to Harlem with his foster parents at age three. He was brought up and went to public school there. He attended Stuyvesant High School until the age of seventeen when he joined the army.

After serving four years in the army, he worked at various jobs and earned a BA from Empi
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“It's hard to be brave when you can stumble across a world of hurt around any corner.” 1 likes
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