May 16, 2011

A Million Shades of Gray by Cynthia Kadohata

A story of inhumanity, humanity and survival in the jungles of Vietnam, shortly after the Americans pull out of Vietnam. Y'Tin is now 13, but has been an elephant handler since the age of 11. He loves his elephant Lady, whom he treats with a courage and compassion uncommon to the other elephant handlers in his village. His village is attacked by the North Vietnamese, and Y'Tin is captured, separating him from his family and beloved Lucy. He witnesses horrors and cruelty but escapes to search the jungle for his family and Lucy, while trying to avoid being re-captured or killed. A good novel, that will help make students aware of the Vietnam War, it's horrors, and the courage and hardships the Vietnamese people faced, though the commitment and love that Y'Tin and Lucy have for each other is what really drives the story
Reed Reads Score: 3.5

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