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From Far Away by Robert Munsch

From Far Away (edition 2017)

by Robert Munsch (Author), Saoussan Askar (Author), Rebecca Green (Illustrator)

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingConversations
1547123,861 (3.94)None
"When Saoussan immigrated with her family from war-torn Lebanon, she was only seven years old. This picture book tells the story of how she had to adjust to her new home in Canada. She describes the frustration of not understanding the teacher when she started school, not knowing how to ask to go to the bathroom, and being terrified of a prop skeleton. This is the perfect book to help kids empathize with immigrant children whose experiences are very similar to Saoussan's."--… (more)
Title:From Far Away
Authors:Robert Munsch (Author)
Other authors:Saoussan Askar (Author), Rebecca Green (Illustrator)
Info:Annick Press (2017), Edition: Reprint, 32 pages
Collections:Your library
Tags:Picture book, Grades 1-5, multicultural, Immigration

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From Far Away by Robert Munsch



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I'm not sure exactly why, but I did not enjoy this book very much. It could have been the abruptness of a child being worried about people shooting at her and her family or it could have been the overall choppiness I felt while reading this book. This books does center around the important topic of immigration, but I wish the story had gone further in atleast one direction. This book touches on several aspects of immigration including fear and safety, the desire to hold on to one's culture while wanting to conform to those around you, and communication difficulties. However, as I mentioned, I felt that the reading did not flow for me and I felt pulled in a lot of different directions. ( )
  Jessica.Kirkland | Mar 26, 2020 |
A story about a young girl who immigrates to America from a country that is at war. The author portrays a great representation of a young girl who struggles in another country to communicate in school and to learn the different customs of being in another country. The young girl in the story Soussan is also scarred by her countries bombing and has to overcome those fears in America. Her dad tells her it is safe here, and we can live safely. I enjoyed this story and would recommend reading it young readers who are from different countries and are learning to live in a foreign atmosphere. ( )
  sbahan | Mar 26, 2020 |
Originally written by Saoussan Askar when she was in the fifth grade this book will resonate with any refugee or immigrant who comes to a new country and tries to fit in. Colorful illustrations of the classroom and library as she goes about her days. The back page includes a little more of the true story. ( )
  lisaladdvt | Jun 30, 2019 |
This story was originally published in 1995 and illustrated by Michael Martchenko. This re-release has been illustrated by Rebecca Green.

This is a timely story with all the immigrants and refugees that have moved to North America over the past 10 years or so. It tells realistically about the fears and struggles of seven year old Saoussan Askar a refugee from Lebanon. She wrote a letter to Robert Munsch about her move and transition to Canada and together they wrote this story. It shows ways that others made her feel welcome and is a model to our young children today. The illustrations show how the classroom population is diverse in ethnicity as well as including a child in a wheelchair. A wonderful story to share with young people today. The publisher generously provided me with a copy of this book via Netgalley. ( )
  Carlathelibrarian | Feb 5, 2019 |
From Far Away, illustrated by Michael Martchenko.

Presented in letter form, this picture-book from celebrated Canadian author Robert Munsch was created in conjunction with schoolgirl refugee Saoussan Askar, who wrote to him with her story. It follows its young letter-writing protagonist as she and her family move from war-torn Lebanon to Canada, and focuses on her confusion and culture-shock, once in her new country. One particularly memorable experience involves Saoussan seeing a paper skeleton intended as a Halloween decoration, and, thinking it some kind of evil sign or omen of impending conflict, finding it immensely frightening. Eventually though, she learns the language, becomes quite a reader and writer, and feels more at home, even participating in Halloween herself...

Originally published in 1995 with artwork by Michael Martchenko, an illustrator who has collaborated with Munsch on many of his picture-books, From Far Away was reprinted last year (2017) with new artwork by Rebecca Green. The version I read was the original one however, with artwork by Martchenko. I enjoyed the story, which is a bit of a departure from the usual Munsch/Martchenko madcap adventure tale, and thought it worked quite well, in highlighting some of the cultural misperceptions and barriers that might make a refugee's first days in a new country more difficult. I also greatly appreciated the fact that this was a collaborative project involving the young girl whose story it is, as it makes the narrative feel much more authentic. Finally, I appreciated the fact that Saoussan and her family embrace their new country, and don't feel that they can't participate in cultural festivals like Halloween, as I know that this is considered problematic by more fundamentalist adherents of Islam (as well as Christianity, as it happens). Recommended to anyone looking for children's stories about the refugee experience. ( )
  AbigailAdams26 | Jun 21, 2018 |
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Munsch, Robertprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Askar, Saoussanmain authorall editionsconfirmed
Green, RebeccaIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Martchenko, MichaelIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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The 1995 edition has illustrations by Michael Martchenko. The 2017 edition has illustrations by Rebecca Green and a revised text.
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This is the story of Saoussan who comes to the Canada from Lebanon and finds adjusting to life in her new country challenging, yet exciting. The book does a good job of talking about war and cultural adjustment in a way younger children can understand.

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Annick Press

2 editions of this book were published by Annick Press.

Editions: 155037396X, 1550373978

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