A lyrical and unifying picture book that “will inspire young readers” and “magnificently showcases the immigrant experience” (Kirkus Reviews, starred review) in America from Newbery Honoree Margarita Engle and award-winning illustrator Raúl Colón.

Discover the myriad contributions that all immigrants have made as they come to join family or start their own lives together in a new country they call home. Coming with their hopes, dreams, and determination, generations of immigrants have made the fabric of this country diverse, vivid, and welcoming.

This vibrant and timely celebration demonstrates the thousands of immigrants who built America and the importance of having acceptance and light for everyone.


This lovely picture book by an award-winning author and illustrator team honors the contribution that immigrants have made to the United States. Focusing on the ideals that the Statue of Liberty has come to personify, Engle shares with readers some of the reasons that immigrants have come to this country as well as what they've given to their new country, and the love they often still hold for their countries of origin. A few of the ugly parts of U.S. History are mentioned on one two-page spread showing a teacher with her students and a map.  Engle's beautiful poetry highlights the important part that immigrants play in the pursuit of American ideals and the part all of us can play in welcoming them here.  Her author's note at the end gives readers a glimpse into her own background and feelings about the topic.  Colon's illustrations beautifully complement Engle's poetry with spreads showing immigrants from a variety of different backgrounds adapting to life in a new country.  This book reminds readers both young and old of the value of immigration and the important opportunity that we have to welcome them. 


A reflection on immigration, family, and home.

Wishes tells the honest story about one Vietnamese family's search for a new home on the other side of the world, and the long-lasting impact that makes on the littlest member of the family. Inspired by actual events in the author's life.


The first time I read this book, I fell in love with the illustrations, but I wasn't quite sure what to think of the text.  Each spread shares a wish.  At first each wish is expressed by a nonliving entity such as the night or a bag, or a dream.  This puzzled me until I thought about it a bit and I realized that the young girl that is the focus of the story is really making the wishes herself but is afraid to express them for herself.  It is less frightening for her to make the wish on behalf of something else.  Once I saw this message for myself the book took on new meaning.  Ngai's stunningly beautifully illustrations captured me from the first page. My heart immediately felt compassion for this young girl and her family who are leaving everything they know and love behind, including her grandfather, in order to find a new life elsewhere. Walking a long distance to climb into a crowded boat, experiencing a storm at sea only to be roasted by the sun later, this young girl clings to the only familiar thing left in her world: her family.  This touching picture book depicts a heart-wrenching and yet ultimately hopeful story in a powerful way.  Highly recommended.


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