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review 2017-07-11 23:12
"They want us to leave yet they make us pay to do so."
Weeping Under This Same Moon - Jana Laiz

Weeping Under the Same Moon was originally published in 2008, but has recently been released as an audiobook, available through Audible. I was lucky enough to receive a copy for review from Audiobook Boom and enthusiastically give it five stars, both for the narrative and the narration.

 

Two narrators read the story: one plays the teenage refugee, Mei, who must flee from Vietnam at a time when anyone of Chinese descent was being persecuted, the other plays Hannah, an American teenage misfit and loner, with eating problems.

 

 

Based on the true story of two teenagers, the book follows Mai's departure form her beloved home, along with her fourteen year old brother and little sister. From then on she must assume responsibility for both, although she is barely more than a child herself. The crossing is frightening, with very little to eat or drink and no toilet facilities. The little boat is at the mercy of the sea and many are sea-sick. Mai's best friend had attempted the crossing before her and had drowned herself rather than be subjected to rape, so Mai is full of trepidation. When they finally reach Malaysia their problems are not over - rather than a comfortable bed and welcoming arms, they find themselves sharing a room with another family, locked in a refugee camp.

 

Meanwhile, Hannah, who I believe is actually the author, Jana Laiz, is struggling in school. She has become socially isolated because she refuses to conform and smoke dope with her friends. She has resorted to extreme dieting to feel better about herself and although she writes and takes photographs, she declines to share them for fear of ridicule. I fear she represents many children who are picked on and bullied in schools across the West.

When she hears about the Vietnamese Boat People she is motivated to help and contacts an organisation involved with repatriation. She is put in contact with a group of families who have recently arrived; they speak little English and she speaks no Vietnamese, but she doggedly perseveres and is able to help them in so many ways.

 

Several things struck me about this book:

Firstly, what a wonderful motivational story this would be for struggling, isolated teens. How volunteering could actually help the volunteer as much as the recipients.

Secondly, how differently refugees were received then, around the end of the 1970s. Many of these people were homed into the West and integrated into society - unlike in another book I recently read about today's refugees (Paradise Denied by Zekarias Kebraeb), where so many were repatriated to face a hostile welcome on their return.

 

The issue of refugees is very topical and books such as Weeping Under This Same Moon and Paradise Denied, should be required reading in schools.

I was sorry when this book ended, I felt as if its characters were my friends.

 

Also read:

Paradise Denied by Zekarias Kebraeb (5 stars)

The Girl with Seven Names by Hyeonseo Lee (5 stars)



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review 2017-05-30 19:03
Lovely illustrations and scientifically sound.
Different? Same! - Heather Tekavec,Pippa Curnick

This was a beautifully illustrated children's book, highlighting the similarities between many, apparently different, animals. A blubbery walrus, a wrinkly elephant, a bristly warthog and a smooth narwhal are all very different at first glance, "but look closely now", they all have tusks. The catchy repetition of the phrase "but look closely now" worked really well to keep the rhythm and interest of the book's young audience.

 

My 15 month grandson was too young for the comparisons between the animals but he loved the images of the animals and making the noises of the ones he recognised.

Unfortunately the copy I received via NetGalley could not be viewed on my Kindle so this is not going to join 'The Forest Sleeps' as one of our favourite books.

 

At the end of the book all the animals are repeated, with an opportunity to note more similarities between them - spots, numbers of legs, or webbed feet, for example. There is also an explanation for features such as tusks, shells, whiskers, etc. I would imagine that this book would be popular in a pre-school library and for sharing with children between 2 and 5 years, it has plenty to offer for quite a varied age group.

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text 2017-05-15 00:47
Lovely illustrations and scientifically sound.
Different? Same! - Heather Tekavec,Pippa Curnick

This was a beautifully illustrated children's book, highlighting the similarities between many, apparently different, animals.
A blubbery walrus, a wrinkly elephant, a bristly warthog and a smooth narwhal are all very different at first glance, "but look closely now", they all have tusks. The catchy repetition of the phrase "but look closely now" worked really well to keep the rhythm and interest of the book's young audience.

My 15 month grandson was too young for the comparisons between the animals but he loved the images of the animals and making the noises of the ones he recognised.
Unfortunately the copy I received via NetGalley could not be viewed on my Kindle so this is not going to join The Forest Sleeps as one of our favourite books.

At the end of the book all the animals are repeated, with an opportunity to note more similarities between them - spots, numbers of legs, or webbed feet, for example. There is also an explanation for features such as tusks, shells, whiskers, etc.
I would imagine that this book would be popular in a pre-school library and for sharing with children between 2 and 5 years, it has plenty to offer for quite a varied age group.

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review 2017-05-09 11:19
The Same But Different - original ending by geenajay
The Same But Different - original ending... The Same But Different - original ending - geenajay
The original ending to 'The Same But Different.' I prefer the newer version.
Source: archiveofourown.org/works/10753875?view_full_work=true
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review 2017-05-09 11:15
The Same But Different by geenajay
The Same But Different - geenajay The Same But Different - geenajay

An enjoyable fanfic in which Dean Winchester is exchanged for an omega version of himself. Both Deans find themselves in a very different world from their own.

Source: archiveofourown.org/works/8958217?view_full_work=true
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