Thirteen-year-old Mai and her family give up their homeland and beloved heritage to embark on a harrowing voyage from war-torn Vietnam to American--and freedom. Has a rare simplicity and sharp focus.--Bulletin for the Center for Children's Books.
From the front Cover When Mai's family discovers that Vietnam government soldiers will soon apprehend her father and grandmother, the family slips away in the night. They trudge through the swamps of the Mekong Delta toward the sea. The gut-wrenching trip to Hong Kong is just another step toward a new life, which the family eventually finds. Whelan's characters are distinctive, and her story is riveting, haunting, and memorable, reflecting the human virtues of determination, hope, love, and courage in the face of the most devastating of circumstances and injustices.--Booklist.