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|I'm an immigrant too!|
Author: Fox, Mem
Illustrations and simple, rhyming text reveal how all of our lives are enriched by the vibrant cultural diversity immigrants bring to their new communities.
School Library Journal (09/01/18)
Full Text Reviews:
School Library Journal - 09/01/2018 PreS-Gr 1—This picture book begins with a young boy and girl posing the question; "I'm Australian! How about you?" What follows is a rhyming and colorful spread of various children explaining their origins and family roots. "My dad grew up in Darwin,/my mum in Humpty Doo./Our mob's been here forever—/now we share the place with you." Each child's tale is accompanied by a lovely graphic-style illustration by Ghosh, depicting the various landscapes of Australia or simply children playing in a pool or waiting by a bus stop. Fox touches on current immigrants, such as those from Syria and Afghanistan, and the violence they have escaped in an age-appropriate manner. The conclusion of the book is less chipper with a young girl holding a bird cage, standing next to a large, concrete wall with the text; "Sadly, I'm a refugee—/I'm not Australian yet./But if your country lets me in,/I'd love to be a vet." There is also a map at the beginning of the story showing where everyone "hailed from" and the end of the book displays another map showing where they now live in Australia. VERDICT While immigration is certainly a major news item today, the cities and regions in Australia may be too far removed for the majority of American children to relate to. An optional purchase.—Amy Nolan, St. Joseph Public Library, MI - Copyright 2018 Publishers Weekly, Library Journal and/or School Library Journal used with permission.
Booklist - 10/01/2018 The unabashed message of this book, as the title announces, is to remind young readers that Australia is a place of immigrant settlers. Beloved Australian children’s author Fox (Nellie Belle, 2015) uses cute rhyming couplets to pack eons of history into jaunty verses, one for each kind of Australian family represented in the story. Readers learn that being Australian means knowing where one's ancestors came from: Ireland, Italy, Vietnam, Greece, Lebanon, Somalia, and China are some of the countries mentioned. The second couplet hints at the reasons for immigration—famine, war, love—and will perhaps plant the seeds in young readers' minds that people make homes in different places for a variety of reasons, all of which are valid. A particularly poignant verse about a refugee child waiting to be allowed into the country might elicit questions about the process of immigration and belonging. All the verses end on a happy note, and crisp, cheerful illustrations add to the book’s celebratory and welcoming tone: “We open doors to strangers. / Yes, everyone’s a friend.” - Copyright 2018 Booklist.