Sylvia and Aki
Grades 4-7
Thursday, December 22, 2011
by: Allisson Ladd

Section: Children's Book Reviews

Fall/Winter 2011

Allison Ladd is a recent graduate from the University of Alabama School of Library and Information Studies with a special interest in library services to differently abled youth.

After Sylvia Mendez and her family move into the house vacated by Japanese Americans sent to internment camps, she and her younger brothers are told they cannot attend the main school in their new town because they are Mexican. Their father takes legal action when his children are forced into a segregated school. Aki Munemitsu’s family owned Sylvia’s house before they were removed to Japanese internment camps after U.S. entry into World War II and Aki does not know if her family will ever be together again. The girls’ lives are woven together during turbulent times, which led to great changes in America. Conkling easily expresses a need for unity among diversity by highlighting an often ignored case in U.S. history. Pre-teens will find this book thought provoking and engaging. Highly Recommended.

Sylvia and Aki. Winifred Conkling. Berkeley: Tricycle Press, 2011. 150 pp. $16.99 (Hardcover). ISBN 978-1-58246-337-7. Grades 4-7. English with some Spanish and Japanese.

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