My First Day

Make Me a World. Feb. 2021. 40p. Tr $17.99. ISBN 9780593306260.
K-Gr 3–A Vietnamese boy sets out on a journey in his little wooden boat on “the great river, Mother Mekong.” This is his first time making this trip alone, and he leads us through open waves, mangrove trees, the darkness of the unknown, bright open skies, schools of fish, and water buffalo until he reaches his destination: school, on his very first day. Quang and Lien take readers through a visually breathtaking expedition filled with highs and lows. The phenomenal artwork enhances the poetic language of this young boy’s trip and lets readers follow along, experiencing his fears, hopes, and joy. The story also provides an informative look at life along the Mekong River during “floating season,” from the mangrove forests to the animals that he encounters on his trip. The digitized pen-and-ink illustrations are presented in wide, panoramic scenes, enhancing the majestic, almost cinematic quality of the images. Back matter includes further information from the author/illustrator duo, facts about the Mekong River, and a simple map.
VERDICT Highly recommended for all collections.

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