Michelle Isenhoff

Multicultural

Kira-Kira, by Cynthia Kadohata

Before I dive into this review, I have a quick, fun note. A month ago I gushed about my favorite middle grade novel of 2016, The Girl Who Drank the Moon. A week and a half later the Newbery winner was announced. Guess what? I should have been on that panel! I finally broke my recent string […]

The Beloved Daughter, by Alana Terry

READERS’ FAVORITE, 1ST PLACE GOLD MEDAL GRACE AWARDS, 1ST PLACE WOMEN OF FAITH WRITING CONTEST, 2ND PLACE BOOK CLUB NETWORK, 1ST PLACE BOOK OF THE MONTH INDIEFAB FINALIST, RELIGIOUS FICTION I don’t rave about books very often, but this one blew me away. I’ve familiarized myself with some of the inhumane activities going on in […]

Flying the Dragon, by Natalie Dias Lorenzi

Skye has a cousin, Hiroshi, she has never met. Because Hiroshi lives in Japan, and Skye was born in America. But when Grandfather grows ill, Skye’s Japanese relatives move to America for Grandfather’s treatment. Skye is embarrassed to have Hiroshi in class with her. He can’t speak English well. He’s completely unaware how “uncool” he […]

A Long Walk to Water, by Linda Sue Park

This is the remarkable story of Salva Dut, a survivor of the Sudanese Civil War that raged from 1983-2002. Salva spent years walking, avoiding the war, living in refuge camps—surviving. He was one of the lucky ones who eventually migrated to America. He then chose to return to drought-ridden Sudan and drill wells in poor […]

Where the Mountain Meets the Moon, by Grace Lin

This was a sweet little story that took Newbery honors a few years ago. Minli lives in a small, poor village in ancient Asia with her Ma, who has become bitter at their poverty, and Ba (father), who tells stories to lighten it. After a visit by a traveling peddler, Minli sets out to change […]

Esperanza Rising, by Pam Munoz Ryan

I’ve reached the end of my Friday posts. Esperanza Rising marks the last of the content I wanted to save from my self-hosted site. I’ll now be posting only once a week again, as I’m almost finished writing Song 2 and I’d like to finish Song 3 before school ends.  Sometimes a book comes out that […]

Tears of a Tiger, by Sharon Draper, 1994, Book Review

“In Memorium Robbie Washington, captain of our basketball team, was killed after the November 7 game in a terrible automobile accident…” …and Andy was the one driving the car. Drunk. He didn’t mean for it to happen. He didn’t want anyone to get hurt, especially not his best friend. They were just having a bit […]

A Single Shard, by Linda Sue Park, 2001, Book Review

I had the vague feeling that I read this book before. I remembered bits and pieces, and some settings I recalled quite strongly. The characters were sort of like those familiar faces you run into now and then and know you should place them but they elude you till you stop and ask. I guess […]

Heart of a Samurai, by Margi Preus, 2010, Book Review

A storm, a shipwreck, and five stranded Japanese fishermen picked up by an American whaler. The problem?  They can never go home. Because of Japan’s strict isolationist policy and fear of outsiders, those who leave Japan can never return. The year is 1841. Young Manjiro, like the other fishermen, is suspicious of his blue-eyed rescuers. […]

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