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Inside Out and Back Again (2011)

by Thanhha Lai

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
3,7225202,715 (4.35)111
Through a series of poems, a young girl chronicles the life-changing year of 1975, when she, her mother, and her brothers leave Vietnam and resettle in Alabama.
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» See also 111 mentions

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Grade 3 to 7
800L
#1 NewYork Times Bestseller
Newbery Honor Book
National Book Award
  kposs | May 6, 2022 |
This is a great book depicture the struggles of a family that is forced to move due to the Vietnam war, but it is a bit of a higher grade of reading level. ( )
  Kyle_Roberson | Apr 23, 2022 |
Wonderfully written. Does not shy away from hard truths, and is true to a child's point of view. ( )
  jennybeast | Apr 14, 2022 |
This book is written in verse and is about a young girl and her family. It starts out in Vietnam and the family has to flee because of the war. They end up in refugee camps until they are placed in Alabama. There they struggle with racism and culture shock. This would be a good book for 5th or 6th grade classroom because the structure of the book is easy to read but the content is a little more mature. ( )
  Rachel_Sherwood | Mar 20, 2022 |
This is a middle grade fiction, a novel in verse, told in the voice of an 8-year-old girl who fled Vietnam with her mother and brothers at the end of Vietnam War. It's short and easy to read. The first section of the book is about her life in Vietnam with all the tensions of war, the second section is about the family's escape and the sufferings they went through as refugees, the third section is about how the family establish a new life in Texas. All three sections are memorable in its own way, but what stands out the most for me is how the 8-year-old girl was bullied by her classmates in Texas. I think she faced the challenges very courageously, much better than I would have in her situation. Another detail I resonated with as a 1.5-generation immigrant is how the girl felt the disconnect between how smart she was in Vietnam (she was already reading novels; she was good at math) and the U.S. (she couldn't speak English at all). ( )
  CathyChou | Mar 11, 2022 |
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Epigraph
Dedication
To the millions of refugees in the world, may you each find a home
First words
1975: Year of the Cat
Today is Tet,
the first day
of the lunar calendar.
Every Tet
we eat sugary lotus seeds
and glutinous rice cakes.
We wear all new clothes,
even underneath.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Through a series of poems, a young girl chronicles the life-changing year of 1975, when she, her mother, and her brothers leave Vietnam and resettle in Alabama.

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