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Journey Home by Lawrence McKay

Journey Home (edition 2000)

by Lawrence McKay, Dom Lee (Illustrator), Keunhee Lee (Illustrator)

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677255,901 (3.94)None
Title:Journey Home
Authors:Lawrence McKay
Other authors:Dom Lee (Illustrator), Keunhee Lee (Illustrator)
Info:Lee & Low Books (2000), Paperback, 32 pages
Collections:5th-6th Grade Readers, 3rd-4th Grade Readers, Multicultural Books, International Books, Contemporary Realistic Fiction, Picturebooks
Tags:family, culture, journeys

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Journey Home by Lawrence McKay



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Showing 1-5 of 7 (next | show all)
This book made me cry. I feel as if this book choose me. The girl in the story is also a first generation Vietnamese American like me. She travels to Vietnam with her mother who was adopted during the Vietnam War to search for her unknown parents. She feels scared of the unfamiliar language and country. I have also been to Vietnam with my mother to visit my grandparents. When I was reading this story, I just imagined my mother never knowing her parents or name. "It's strange being in a country here I look mostly like everyone else. I'm used to being a littler different, like the way I am back home." Being surrounded by all Vietnamese people gave me a little cultural shock. I felt sympathy towards all the characters in the book. The illustrations really showcased the beauty of Vietnam. I loved the end page when the little girl is flying a kite because of the symbolism of what the kite meant to the mother. "I think home must be inside me and all around me too." I really appreciate this line because even though I was born in America, a part of me still believes Vietnam is home because we share the same culture. I think about how different my life would have been if my mom never came to America. ( )
  mskathyphan | Oct 1, 2018 |
There are two reasons I like this book: the suspenseful and organized plot and that the book causes the reader to broaden their perspective about the idea of what a family should look like. The author built up the suspense in the book in an organized way by first addressing the problem, that the mom doesn't know her biological family, then creating the journey to Vietnam which includes a plane ride, a cyclo ride, and a trip to the market where she and her daughter investigate to try to determine where her mother can find her family. The solution to identifying her family was by relating back to the beginning where the author described a kite that the mom had brought to the US when she was adopted. This kite allowed the mom and the daughter to later recognize a similar one that was made by a man that was able to tell her mom about her biological family. This organize plot allow the reader to follow mom easily but was also suspenseful enough to keep the reader engaged. The author also does a great job at broadening the readers perspective about family. He mentions both biological and adoptive family members both of which are very important and equally loved by the mother. That shows the reader that families do not always consist of the same format of a mom, dad, child, and a dog, but rather that some may have an adopted daughter, and absent father, and deceased biological parents. ( )
  tvance2 | Sep 13, 2016 |
"Journey Home" is a great historical fiction picture book about a girl's journey to her mother's place of birth family in Vietnam. Though brought up in America, she was left a baby in an orphanage during the Vietnam war. When learning about Vietnam before leaving, Mai is especially interested in the stories of Kuan Yin, the Goddess of Mercy, who is believed to remove sorrow when a cry of misery is heard. Taking along a photograph of her mom as a child, they go place to place in hopes of someone recognizing the picture. Finally, they meet a kite maker that recognizes the photo and tells Mom her story and her Vietnamese name. Mom’s parents died in the bombing during the war, and the kite maker, a friend and student of Mom’s father, brought her to an orphanage for safekeeping. Mai internally questions the true meaning of home at the end of the story. Very eloquently written, I liked "Journey Home" a lot. The author's writing style is very mature, and one must know a fair amount of background knowledge on Vietnamese culture and the Vietnam war to follow a majority of the plot. If this were to be given to a classroom, it would be imperative that the teacher establishes background knowledge in their students. The illustrations were classic and beautiful and complemented the story well. Told from Mai's point of view, readers can easily get inside her mind and emotions as she contemplates bigger themes of what home really is. I enjoyed this book a lot. ( )
  scorco2 | Oct 21, 2015 |
This book is an emotional story about a mother's(Lin) journey to find her birth parents with her daughter (Mai). They travel to Vietnam, and Lin finds herself, and her "other homeland". This story also explains just a few aspects of the Vietnam war. Because those war aspects are explained to Mai, who is 10, reading this book to older children should work as well. This book is also a great example of multiculturalism, and it is a great way to get children to see aspects of that specific culture. ( )
  rrossi1 | Sep 19, 2013 |
I enjoyed reading this book because of the character development and detailed illustrations. This book is based on the story of a ten-year-old girl and her mother preparing for their trip to Vietnam because the mother is trying to search for her birth family. The two eventually find out more information about the mother’s childhood, and I truly liked how the young girl develops into a mature daughter for her anxious, emotional mother. I also liked how the illustrations show the details of living conditions in Vietnam, such as the rural landscapes of the country. The central message of this book seems to be that our home resides within us and our sense of belonging depends greatly upon our heart condition. ( )
  AmyLim | Sep 17, 2013 |
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» Add other authors (3 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Lawrence McKayprimary authorall editionscalculated
Lee, DomIllustratorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Lee, KeunheeIllustratorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
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Mai returns to Vietnam, the land of her mother's birth, to discover both a new country and something about herself.

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Lee & Low Books

2 editions of this book were published by Lee & Low Books.

Editions: 1584300051, 1880000652

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