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The Whispering Cloth

by Pegi Deitz Shea
Illustrated by Anita Riggio/ You Yang

Published by Caroline House/ Boyds Mills Pess, 1995
32 pages
ISBN: 1563971348

Ages 7-11

Mai, a young Hmong girl living in a refugee camp in Thailand, waits for the day she might join her cousins in the United States. To pass time, Mai listens to the women tell stories of their Laotian homeland, and she watches the stories take shape inside the beautiful borders of the pa'ndau, the story cloth they sew. Wanting to stitch her own pa'ndau, Mai finds herself remembering the death of her parents and her flight from Laos to the refugee camp with her grandmother. An important narrative about the experience of Hmong refugee people is illustrated with full-color paintings and an actual pa'ndau stitched for the text to tell Mai's story. An author's note provides information on Ban Vinai, the refugee camp where the story is set. CCBC categories: ISSUES IN TODAY'S WORLD; UNDERSTANDING ONESELF AND OTHERS.  © Cooperative Children's Book Center

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