The Best We Could Do

illus. by Thi Bui. 336p. Abrams ComicArts. Mar. 2017. Tr $24.95. ISBN 9781419718779.
RedReviewStarBui meticulously researched her family's history, discovering how their past affects her. Her family's story is full of struggle and heartache, and the author/illustrator beautifully details her parents' escape from Vietnam to the United States in search of a better life. A new mother, Bui returns to the theme of parenthood and family, and teens will recognize her yearning for stability and a happy future as well as her self-doubt and fear of repeating her parents' mistakes. A compelling narrative and breathtakingly elegant artwork with subtle colors and expressive and finely drawn characters make this title a standout. Curricular tie-ins include immigration policies, refugees, colonization, and the Vietnam War.
VERDICT Hand this essential volume to teens who appreciate David Small's Stitches and Marjane Satrapi's Persepolis.

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