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Posts Tagged ‘tuan-ho’

Book Dreaming “STRONGLY recommend[s]” Adrift at Sea to middle school and high school history classrooms

Posted on December 27th, 2016 by pajamapress

AdriftAtSea_websiteThis is one of the most beautiful and powerful picture books Ive seen in a long time. I wasblown away by the emotional impact of both the story and the illustrations. It would make a perfect edition to any middle or high school history classroom. I STRONGLY recommend this one!

Click here to read the full review

Resource Links sings high praises for Adrift at Sea

Posted on December 27th, 2016 by pajamapress

AdriftAtSea_website“What a powerful book! Marsha Forchuk Skrypuch and Tuan Ho tell the story of Tuan and his family’s escape from Vietnam in an overcrowded fishing boat in 1981. The story is a true one recounted by Tuan of how he (when he was six years old), his mother, his two sisters and his aunt and cousins made their escape…

Brian Deines’ subtle double-page oil paintings add greatly to the mood and text of this story. There is also an historical and biographical section at the end of the book which explains the conditions in Vietnam in 1981 and what happened to Tuan Ho’s family as they made a new life for themselves in Canada. Tuan has become a very successful physiotherapist and now has a family of his own.

This book is very timely as we have so many refugees from war torn countries in the Middle East now attempting to make their way to a better life under the same kind of conditions that the Vietnamese people experienced back in 1981. With so many refugee children attending schools in Canada now, books like this one can help young children appreciate what some of these children have experienced and develop an empathy for them as they integrate into Canadian society.

I would highly recommend this book for all school and public libraries.”
Victoria Pennell

Read the full review on page 26 of the December 2016 issue of Resource Links

Midwest Book Review says Adrift at Sea “will prompt young people to be grateful for the good things in their lives”

Posted on December 12th, 2016 by pajamapress

AdriftAtSea_websiteAdrift at Sea is a nonfiction picturebook about a six-year-old Vietnamese boy named Tuan Ho, one of sixty Vietnamese refugees who, in the year 1981, braved a dangerous sea journey in search of a better life. The a two-page spread at the end place Tuan Ho’s journey in historical context, describing the exodus of refugees who fled Vietnam after the end of the Vietnam War in 1975. The final page gives the story of Tuan Ho’s family members, who were separated by their attempts to escape Vietnam. Adrift at Sea is a heartwarming story that will prompt young people to be grateful for the good things in their lives, and highly recommended.”

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Adrift at Sea gets a 5 Star review from Kids’ Book Buzz

Posted on December 7th, 2016 by pajamapress

AdriftAtSea_website“We rated this book: 5/5

Tuan lives in a place where life isn’t very good and a lot of people are getting killed. His mother tells him that they are going on a boat to escape….

This book is true, and it is really sad. It was really scary for Tuan to try to escape, and the worst thing was that his family couldn’t be together for a long time. The pictures really help you understand how it would have felt. This is a good book to help you understand how people feel and the things they have to do if they feel like they need to run away from bad things that are happening where they live.”
—Rachel, Age 9

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Adrift at Sea shows “[t]hat the human spirit can triumph under the most trying of conditions” praises Quill & Quire

Posted on November 25th, 2016 by pajamapress

AdriftAtSea_website“This is not the first time Skrypuch has dealt with Vietnam….The author’s familiarity with her subject is evident here, and Tuan’s dramatic story of survival comes alive in Skrypuch’s capable hands. The heart-pounding action alone is enough to captivate readers, but Skrypuch also incorporates moments of great poignancy that add depth and emotion. As little Tuan watches a nearby boat filled with people erupt in flames and slowly sink, he reflects that there is nothing he can do to help and wonders if the same thing will happen to his boat. This is just one of many scenes with the potential to inspire empathy and discussion about the plight of refugees.

Deines’s accompanying artwork is achingly beautiful. Rich, warm colours make readers feel they are experiencing Vietnam for themselves. That danger can exist amid such beauty is an important lesson to learn. That the human spirit can triumph under the most trying of conditions is even more important.”
Sarah Sorensen

Read the full review in the December 2016 issue of Quill & Quire on page 49

Adrift at Sea is “a good introduction to the subject of the Vietnamese boat people…” says Semicolon

Posted on November 18th, 2016 by pajamapress

AdriftAtSea_website“…The illustrations in this book, full color paintings, are absolutely stunning. Canadian illustrator, Brian Deines, has outdone himself in two-page spreads that bring this refugee story to life.

The story itself, a slice of life, begins abruptly without any explanation as to why the family must leave Vietnam. Nor does the main part of the text explain what happens to Tuan Ho and family after they are rescued at sea. However, there are some explanatory pages with both photographs and text at the end of the book that tell readers about the history of the Vietnam War and about the entire history of Tuan Ho’s family and their emigration from Vietnam and eventual reunification in Canada. It’s a good introduction to the subject of the Vietnamese boat people for both older students and middle grade readers. Even primary age children could appreciate Tuan Ho’s story with a little bit of explanation from a parent or teacher about the war and the Communist persecution that they were fleeing….”

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Sal’s Fiction Addiction reviews Adrift at Sea

Posted on November 7th, 2016 by pajamapress

AdriftAtSea_website“…Today we are all aware of the refugee crisis that grips the world. Too many people are forced to flee their homes in search of safety and a better life, away from the strife and danger in their own villages, towns, cities, countries. We see their faces, hear their stories and share their hopes for a happier future.

In 1981, the ‘boat people’ from Vietnam are struggling to deal with what has happened in their own beloved country. They, too, see their only hope is in leaving….

The authors include personal photographs of Tuan’s family, before their escape and following their settling in Canada, to help readers understand this historical moment in time. Added information includes a map, archival and family photos, and an explanation for the need to leave….

The dangers were many, their journeys harrowing, and the time spent in refugee camps often too long. Still, they stayed the course and eventually many settled in ‘the United States, France, Australia, and Canada.’

Brian Deines (as he always does) has created truly beautiful artwork using oils on canvas to bring Tuan’s story to this book’s readers. From the lush, tropical street in Ho Chi Minh City, the dark seashore, the blistering heat of a sun-filled sky, the clear blue beauty of the sea beneath them where dolphins play, to the almost overpowering arrival of the aircraft carrier, we journey with the family as they make their courageous way to a new life.”

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Kirkus reviews Adrift at Sea

Posted on November 2nd, 2016 by pajamapress

AdriftAtSea_website“A young Vietnamese boy and his family flee Vietnam in search of a better life. Along with co-author Skrypuch, Vietnamese-Canadian Ho recounts his family’s flight from Vietnam in 1981. At the book’s outset, 6-year-old Ho returns home from school to learn that he, his mother, and his two older sisters will leave Vietnam that very night. Each hour of the Ho family’s flight is fraught with danger. Soldiers shoot at them on the beach when they make a run toward a skiff. Their boat springs a leak, and soon after, the motor dies, leaving 60 passengers adrift in the middle of the sea with little water and food. Throughout the harrowing passage, Ho’s mother is by his side, comforting him. On the sixth day of their four-day journey, an American aircraft carrier spots their boat and offers the Vietnamese passengers refuge….[D]etailed authors’ notes include history, photographs, and maps. The warm undertones in Deines’ oil paintings evoke tropical Vietnam…”

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Adrift at Sea is featured on Literacy Daily’s article “War and Its Aftermath”

Posted on November 1st, 2016 by pajamapress

AdriftAtSea_website“…In this visually stunning picture book—the first to explore this troubling time—readers learn of the dangerous journey taken by 6-year-old Tuan Ho and his family in 1981. Slipping away under cover of darkness, the family ends up on an overcrowded fishing boat that breaks down, leaving them stranded and suffering from thirst and punishing heat for four days before being rescued by an American aircraft  carrier. The evocative text and powerful illustrations, painted with oils, enable readers to feel as though they, too, are refugees adrift at sea during this risky journey to freedom. Back matter includes family photographs, showing Tuan Ho’s family then and now, as well as a brief discussion of the events that led to the family’s flight from Vietnam to Canada.”

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Booklist gives Adrift at Sea a positive review

Posted on October 18th, 2016 by pajamapress

AdriftAtSea_websiteThe text is terse and unembellished, leaving the images to capture the emotions through color and perspective—and they do so with compelling immediacy.