Dad gently wakes up young Bao one morning. Dad packs some sandwiches and drives Bao in the car. Their first stop is at the bait shop, where Dad selects some small fish. They then proceed to the pond. Dad and Bao prepare for their catch as it continues to be dark. While they wait for the fish, Dad mentions why they came to fish and briefly remembers the other pond where he and his brother fished back home. Did Bao and Dad get some fish?
We picked this book based on a recommendation. The story is told by a child whose parents fled a war-torn country and struggled to make ends meet in a new country while dealing with tragic events back home. While the author tinges on this simple story about a fishing trip with Dad with sadness but tells it gently without frightening young readers. Superb illustrations beautifully complemented the book’s graphic-styled design.
In Bao Phi’s A Different Pond, illustrated by Thi Bui, the delicate tale of a little boy’s reflection on his early years, weaving in his parents’ attempt to reconcile with their past while surviving in the present, will force you to be less judgmental and empathetic with everyone around you.
Originally published: 2017
Author: Bao Phi
Illustrator: Thi Bui
Rating basis (of 5.0): Story (5.0), Characters (5.0) Writing Style (5.0), Illustrations (5.0), Cover (5.0) & Ease (4.0)
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