a True Story
Eleven-year-old Tenzin hasn't seen his older brother, Pasang, in five years, so he is thrilled when Pasang unexpectedly returns to their Tibetan village late one night. Now eighteen, Pasang is an educated monk whose return from India provokes the suspicious and ever-watchful eyes of the Chinese authorities. Unbeknownst to Tenzin, Pasang has conspired with their mother to leave again--taking his younger brother with him this time, in search of a better life. At first Tenzin is thrilled to embark on such an adventure, but crushing homesickness soon sets in as the brothers eke out a meager existence begging in the unfamiliar streets of Lhasa, often narrowly dodging the police. They finally scrape together enough money to begin the most harrowing part of their journey: the physically excruciating, dangerous, and illegal trek to a new country on the other side of the Himalayan mountains, where they can be granted refugee status and begin to rebuild their lives. Along the way they suffer abuse at the hands of border police, meet fellow Tibetans from whom they draw strength, and have a chance encounter with a film crew that will change their lives.--From publisher description.
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