Friday, July 13, 2012

Thoughts on Inside Out and Back Again by Thanhha Lai

This is less a 'review' (though I feel very uncomfortable saying I review books so please know I use the term loosely) and more of a sigh or a clutch to the heart.  Or maybe just a come-here-listen because I only want to say what a beautiful book this is.

I'd copy every line, give it to you here, so you could have it too.  But I can't. And, I don't know, to give you just a few lines...  How could I choose?

I'll give you this anecdote instead.

I was fortunate to hear Tara Weikum, the editor of this book, speak at a conference earlier this year.  She claimed to not like historical fiction or novels in verse.  She was not looking for a book about war or about a refugee experience.  This novel came across her desk and she did not want to read it.

It took just a few lines for her to fall in love.  She had to convince a team of people to publish it.  She did.  And here we are.

I like that kind of story.  I like that we were given Thanhha Lai's story against all odds.


  1. Thanks, Melissa. I have this one on my to-read list. :)