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Nim and the War Effort
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About the Author

Milly Lee grew up in San Francisco's Chinatown. She is a retired school librarian and lives in Sonoma County, California. Yangsook Choi grew up in Korea and holds an M.F.A. from the School of Visual Arts in New York City, where she now lives.

Reviews

Nim, the protagonist in this sweetly nostalgic trip to San Francisco's Chinatown of 1943, wants desperately to bring in the most newspapers for her school's paper drive-especially after a classmate takes papers that were meant for her. Her eagerness to help in the war effort (and win the contest) vie with her obedience to her Grandfather, as she riskily leaves the neighborhood to collect more papers. But her determination pays off in winning both the contest and the respect of her Grandfather for her patriotism. Lee and Choy, each making a publishing debut, are paired with enormous success: their work has a clear symbiosis. Choi paints with a soothing clarity of line and a rich palette infused with yellow, "aging" undertones. The seasoned visuals enhance Lee's text, which, while lengthy for the picture-book format, offers thought-provoking insights into Chinese American family life and the stresses of having an Asian heritage during the war with Japan. Ages 6-up. (Mar.)

Gr 2-4‘Nim, a young Chinese-American girl, lives with her multigenerational family in San Francisco's Chinatown. World War II is ongoing, and she is absorbed in the last day of a competition to gather more newspapers for her school's paper drive than Garland Stephenson, the class bully. Taking her red wagon into the ritzy Nob Hill area for a last search for newsprint, Nim discovers a treasure trove of collected papers, finds a way to transport them to school, and wins the contest. The plot is well structured; the warm affection and unquestioned respect for authority in Nim's home lend even more appeal. Scenes from the family's daily life are effectively described in the narrative and illustrated in the soft contours and muted earth tones of the full-page paintings. Grandfather's morning Tai Chi practice, Grandmother's bound feet, the polite rituals of the family meal, and the scheduled lessons at Nim's late-day Chinese school all take readers into life in Chinatown in the mid-20th century. Based on the author's childhood memories, Nim's story celebrates the patriotism of Asian family members in embracing their new home and country and their efforts to maintain their cultural traditions. A fine addition.‘Shirley Wilton, Ocean County College, Toms River, NJ

Based on the author's childhood memories, Nim's story celebrates the patriotism of Asian family members in embracing their new home and country and their efforts to maintain their cultural traditions. A fine addition. - School Library Journal

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