Pajama Press

Posts Tagged ‘war’

Jean Little Library recommends One Step at a Time

Posted on April 8th, 2013 by pajamapress

“Skrypuch’s simple language captures the fear and bewilderment of a girl who’s barely had time to deal with the trauma of her escape from Vietnam and new life in a strange country when she’s confronted with yet another frightening experience. Tuyet still doesn’t speak English and although she knows they’re trying to fix her leg, she doesn’t understand why they’re doing it the way they are. However, with the help of friends she makes it through the operation. Then the real work begins as she struggles with physical therapy and recovery. However, Tuyet has boundless determination and insists on standing on her own two feet, both emotionally and physically, and finally triumphs. Along the way there are incidents and growing experiences that give the reader a good look not only at Tuyet’s childhood but also at the time period…Recommended.”

Click here to read the full review.

 

Last Airlift is a CCBC Choice 2013

Posted on March 28th, 2013 by pajamapress

The Cooperative Children’s Book Center at the University of Wisconsin-Madison has released their CCBC Choices 2013 publication. Among the exemplary books selected is Marsha Forchuk Skrypuch’s Last Airlift: A Vietnamese Orphan’s Rescue from War, released in the US in 2012:

“The last Canadian airlift to leave Saigon during the Vietnam War was on April 11, 1975. The plane carried 57 babies and children, along with rescue workers. Son Thi Anh Tuyet was one of the orphans on board. About nine years old at the time, she was experienced helping care for younger children and babies—something she did all the time at the orphanage where she’d lived. So perhaps it was no surprise that when she first met the Morris family in Toronto a few weeks later, she assumed the couple with three young children had picked her to be their helper, not their daughter. But they had chosen her to be their child, and in the coming weeks and months, as Tuyet adjusts to life in the West, she also begins to understand what it means to be part of a family, and loved unconditionally. Marsha Forchuk Skrypuch never strays from Tuyet’s child-centered perspective in recounting her experiences. In an author’s note, Skrypuch describes interviewing Tuyet (obviously now an adult), who found that she remembered more and more of the past as she talked. Dialogue takes this narrative out of the category of pure nonfiction, but Tuyet’s story, with its occasional black-and-white illustrations, is no less affecting because of it.”

For more information about the Cooperative Children’s Book Center, visit their website at http://www.education.wisc.edu/ccbc.

School Library Journal review of A Bear in War

Posted on March 18th, 2013 by pajamapress

“Aileen was a 10-year-old Canadian whose father fought in Europe during World War I. She had a small teddy bear that she treasured and carried with her everywhere until she sent it to her father in Belgium, where he served as a medic. He carried Teddy with him, just as his daughter had. In fact, Teddy was with him when he died on the battleground. Eventually the bear was returned to Aileen. This tender story is punctuated throughout with newspaper cuttings, photos, medals, and other realia from the time period. The endpapers are old family letters and the illustrations are evocative of a time when life was simpler but perhaps not as easy. The palette is muted and soft, which makes the story seem comfortable and safe…The history, the illustrations, and the story itself combine to make a wonderful testimonial to a family who made the greatest sacrifice for their country in World War I…”—Joan Kindig, James Madison University, Harrisonburg, VA

For Your Leisure @ Vaughan Public Libraries reviews Last Airlift

Posted on March 5th, 2013 by pajamapress

“…Although intended for a children audience, Last Airlift is a pleasurable, fast paced book for readers of any age. Tuyet’s rescue is nothing short of miraculous. Skrypuch helps the reader see the journey through Tuyet’s eyes, from her brave attempt to eat “horrible slimy” Catalina salad dressing to the first bonding moments with her adoptive father…”

Click here to read the full review.

 

Last Airlift Takes Manhattan

Posted on February 11th, 2013 by pajamapress

Bookworm Buddies, the blog of the Manhattan Public Library, recently posted this review of Last Airlift:

“When this book came in, I started flipping through it at my desk because the topic reminded me of a Laotian refugee who was in my class when I was in 2nd grade.  I had to give up my lunch hour to keep reading because I couldn’t put the book down once I started.  Tuyet’s story is so amazing. It beings in a crowded Saigon orphanage in April 1975, where Tuyet was one of the older children who had lived at the orphanage her entire life. She helped care for the little ones and put up with bullies and got along as well as she could despite her leg that was damaged by polio.  On April 11, something scary and amazing happened. The babies from the orphanage were placed in cardboard boxes and put in a car, and Tuyet was called to go along with them. She did not know where she was going or why.  American soldiers then packed all the babies into a huge airplane. Tuyet did not think she would be going in, too, but then a woman carried her to the plane that she said would take her away from the war to safety.  Significantly, this Hercules plane was the last Canadian “babylift” to leave Saigon with refugees.  And this is just the beginning of Tuyet’s adventure, full of frightening new things and sounds, language she did not understand, and little to comfort her.  Luckily, Tuyet was adopted into a loving family and given a new chance in life…”—Jennifer

Click here to read the full review.

Apples with Many Seeds reviews Last Airlift

Posted on February 4th, 2013 by pajamapress

“The author conveys the desperate, rushed and tense atmosphere.  We too feel claustrophobic as the door of the airplane shuts and the heat and smell closes in around us and Tuyet.  Everyone seems kind to Tuyet but she has no understanding of why things are happening to her.  Was she selected to help with the babies like she did at the orphanage or because she has one weak ankle and foot, the result of polio?  Where is she going?  What will happen to her once she arrives?

… the story is fascinating.  Being Canadian, I think of the Vietnam War as an American war.  Growing up during the 70s, even in small town Alberta, there were many ‘boat people’ settling into our schools and communities but I didn’t really know specific stories.  Film, TV, and media usually depicted the American situation.  I’ve seen footage of Vietnamese people desperately trying to get onto to aircraft as they were leaving Saigon.  I hadn’t realized that Canada had much involvement.”—Tammy Flanders

Click here to read the full review.

A Bear in War is “touching…beautiful…heartwarming.”—Library of Clean Reads

Posted on January 28th, 2013 by pajamapress

“This touching book based on the true story of the Rogers family and a tiny teddy bear brought tears to my eyes and made my son sad for a family who lost a beloved member. Aileen Rogers, a 10 year old girl who lived on a farm in East Farnham, Quebec in 1915, owned a small stuffed bear named Teddy. When her father, Lawrence, enlisted to go fight in the war in Europe, and his letters reveal that he was cold and tired and missed them terribly while in the trenches, she decided to send him her teddy bear to remind him of home and to keep him safe.

The story is told from the point of view of the teddy bear, and I thought this was well done as a way to gently introduce the concept of war to the child reading it…

…This is a beautiful story and a beautifully illustrated book, with heartwarming moments of family time and love.”

—Laura Fabiani

Click here to read the full review.

Last Airlift is CYBILS finalist

Posted on January 2nd, 2013 by pajamapress

Pajama Press is pleased to announce that Last Airlift: A Vietnamese Orphan’s Rescue from War by Marsha Forchuk Skrypuch is a finalist for the 2012 Children’s and Young Adult Bloggers’ Literary Awards (CYBILS) in the category of Non-fiction: Middle Grade and Young Adult.

CYBILS nominations are collected from members of the public each year for English or bilingual books for children or young adults published in Canada or the United States. Judges from the book blogging community will announce the 2012 winners on February 14, 2013.

Last Airlift has also been shortlisted for the Ontario Library Association Forest of Reading Red Maple Non-Fiction Award, the Red Cedar Information Book Award, and the Hamilton Literary Award.

Click here for more information about the CYBILS.
Click here for more information about Last Airlift: A Vietnamese Orphan’s Rescue from War.

Last Airlift is one of The Nonfiction Detectives’ Top Ten History Books of 2012

Posted on January 1st, 2013 by pajamapress

In November 2012 The Nonfiction Detectives posted a wonderful review of Marsha Forchuk Skrypuch’s Last Airlift: A Vietnamese Orphan’s Rescue from War. Now those two intrepid blogger-librarians have compiled a list of the “Top Ten History Books of 2012,” and Last Airlift shares the stage with titles like We’ve Got a Job: The 1963 Birmingham Children’s March, and Bomb: the race to build—and stealthe world’s most dangerous weapon.

Click here to view the full list.

Flying Off My Bookshelf reviews Last Airlift

Posted on December 17th, 2012 by pajamapress

This is a simple little biography/history. It’s the story of a Vietnamese girl, one of the last to be rescued as the North Vietnamese army marched into Saigon. It’s easy enough for a younger reader to understand and while it doesn’t soften the harsh realities, there’s nothing too graphic. It focuses mostly on Tuyet’s emotions and adjustment to living in Canada with a family.

Click here to read the full review.