Monday, April 29, 2019

Bibliophile's Corner

Rice from Heaven
by Tina Cho

Flap Copy Description:
Rice from Heaven is based on a true story about compassion and bravery as a young girl and her community in South Korea help deliver rice via balloons to the starving and oppressed people in North Korea.

We reach a place where mountains become a wall. A wall so high, no one dares to climb. Beyond that wall and across the sea live children just like me, except they do not have food to eat.

Yoori lives in South Korea and doesn’t know what North Korea is like, but her father (Appa) does. Appa grew up in North Korea, where he did not have enough food to eat. Starving, he fled to South Korea in search of a better life. Yoori doesn’t know how she can help as she’s only a little "grain of rice" herself, but Appa tells her that they can secretly help the starving people by sending special balloons that carry rice over the border.

Villagers glare and grumble, and children protest feeding the enemy, but Yoori doesn’t back down. She has to help. People right over the border don’t have food. No rice, and no green fields.

With renewed spirit, volunteers gather in groups, fill the balloons with air, and tie the Styrofoam containers filled with rice to the tails of the balloons. With a little push, the balloons soar up and over the border, carrying rice in the darkness of the night over to North Korea.

My Thoughts:
I first heard about this picture book from an agent who was a featured speaker at an SCBWI Retreat in the fall of 2018 - I'm finally featuring it on Bibliophile's Corner! Rice from Heaven is not only an inspirational true story, but it is beautifully illustrated. In these turbulent times, I believe it is more important than ever that our youth hear stories of love, inclusiveness, and generosity. I highly recommend Tina Cho's picture book, Rice from Heaven, for children aged three to seven.

Click here to learn about the author, Tina Cho.

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