Tag archives for Culture
BOOK NAME: All the Broken Pieces
AUTHOR: Ann E. Burg
This book is historical fiction about a 10 year old boy who was airlifted out of Vietnam during the war. Now twelve years old, Matt has to adjust to American culture, his adoptive family, and his schoolmates. It is even harder for him because of the terrible memories that came with him to America. He has many feelings of loss, pain, and the horrors of war. He tries to deny them, but he must accept them so he can forgive himself. It takes him a long time to be able to experience the pain of the events again. To pretend that he are not scarred just makes it worse for Matt. At one point, Matt goes to a group where veterans who went to Vietnam come and share their experiences. I thought the veterans would not like Matt because of the bad memories he represents. Instead, they saw him as a symbol of why they fought that war and were very supportive of him. It really gave Matt a chance to accept what had happened in his homeland.
I hadn’t known much about the war before I read this book, but I understand more about it now. It isn’t really about the war itself but about the effect it had on the people who lived there. While reading, you see some of the fears that kids who are adopted in a new country can face. The book is written verse, or poetry style, so it goes by quickly. It is a slight tear jerker but is very well worth the read. If you don’t like sad stories, then just get a tissue box and bear through it because it is an amazing book. It’s another Rebecca Caudill nominee, so it’s guaranteed good reading!
We’ve arrived on Grand Cayman, but we are still waiting for four team members to get to the hotel. They were on later flights. Meanwhile, eleven of us want to share our first impressions of this beautiful island.
Photograph by Dan Westergren
Read the whole post »
BOOK NAME: Homeless Bird
AUTHOR: Gloria Whelan
Homeless Bird by Gloria Whelan is like getting stuck in a maze and thinking there is no way out of it, but eventually coming out and feeling relieved. This realistic fiction book shows that courage is always rewarding.
Koly, a 13 year old girl living in India is married to a boy named Hari by her parents. Hari is sick and dies soon after the marriage making Koly a widow which is considered inauspicious. Her life becomes miserable and all her dreams and hopes disappear. Koly has to bear the harsh scoldings of her cunning Sass or mother-in-law. To get rid of Koly, Sass slyly abandons her in Vrindavan, a city for widows. Here, Koly struggles to find food and shelter. Eventually she makes a living by using her talent of embroidery. Koly meets a hardworking and caring boy named Raji and makes many friends at the widows’ house where she stays. Her new life turns her grief into happiness, making her dreams come true.
I would suggest others to read this book filled with sorrow, pain, relief, and love. Homeless Bird shows many aspects of Indian culture and tradition such as arranged marriages and few rights for widows. I was able to feel Koly’s emotions because of the author’s clever use of similes. The title, Homeless Bird, is very appropriate for it symbolizes Koly’s journey through life. It is definitely an interesting book that you cannot put down once you start reading.
BOOK NAME: Mamba Point
AUTHOR: Kurtis Scaletta
If you don’t like snakes, it’s time to get over your fears because this is an amazing book! This is the second time I’ve reviewed a book that takes place in Africa and the contrast is intriguing. Reading a story such as Mamba Point provides us with an easy journey and chance to escape.
Linus’ family must move from the USA to Africa because his dad got a job there. Getting used to life in Africa comes with many challenges. One of them is getting used to the big black snakes in the area called mambas. They are one of the most dangerous snakes in Africa. When being in a new country gets overwhelming, Linus loves to draw and he secretly brings a mamba to his apartment when no one is home and he sketches the snake! But even though much joy comes to him through the snake, some near disasters take place that change Linus forever.
I think this book really ties together animals and humans in a different way than usually thought. I find this book quite different because it is a new experience for both the snake and Linus. I bet everyone would love this book, especially animal lovers. But Mamba Point is more than just a story about a bond between a boy and his snake. It’s about having a chance to reinvent yourself that many of us can only dream about.
This book will enchant and delight you as you journey with Linus to Africa. Together you and he will learn about African culture, snakes, friendship, and most importantly, truths about themselves. By the way, my mom still isn’t convinced that a snake makes a good pet!