Disturbed in Their Nests: A Journey from Sudan’s Dinkaland to San Diego’s City Heights

By Alephonsion Deng, Judy A. Bernstein
Read By to be announced

Nonfiction/Biography & Autobiography

Audience: Adult

Language: English


When he arrived in America at nineteen years old, Sudanese refugee Alephonsion Deng had never owned shoes or flipped a light switch. The suburban mom who greeted him at the International Rescue Committee in San Diego, Judy Bernstein, had never left her SUV to ride the bus.

This, their second work—the story of Alepho’s first year in America—recounts the initial collision of their cultures, the growing trust, and ultimate friendship in adjusting Alepho to his new country, and it reveals two very different ideas about America and its promises.


“One of the most riveting stories ever told of African childhoods—and a stirring tale of courage…Beautifully told.”

Washington Post on They Poured Fire on Us from the Sky

“The soft plainness of the young writers’ voices, combined with their moral insight, throws the surreal danger and strife into sharp relief.”

San Diego Union-Tribune on They Poured Fire on Us from the Sky

Author Bio

Alephonsion Deng was relocated from the Kakuma refugee camp in Kenya to the United States as part of an international refugee relief program. He arrived in 2001. Now in his mid-twenties, Alephonsion lives in San Diego, California.

Judy A. Bernstein is a mother, writer, student adviser for the Community Economic Development Department at San Diego State University, volunteer mentor, chair of the advisory committee of the San Diego International Rescue Committee, and co-founder of the IRC Lost Boys Education Fund. She is a lecturer and speaker to community groups, temples, churches, and schools.


Biography & Autobiography