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The Immigrant Experience Through Literature: For Younger Readers

The American Wei
The American Wei By Pomeranc, Marion Hess (Book - 1998 ) J PIC P and more… Available to borrow in some locations

Annotation:When Wei Fong loses his first tooth while going to his family's naturalization ceremony, many soon-to-be Americans join in the search.

Grandfather's Journey
Grandfather's Journey By Say, Allen (Book - 1993 )

Annotation:The author recounts his grandfather's journey from Japan to America and the feelings of being torn by a love for both countries.

I Hate English!
I Hate English! By Levine, Ellen (Book - 1989 ) J PIC L and more… Available by request Availability details Holds: 1

Annotation:Mei Mei, from Hong Kong, encounters a strange new language in New York.

Annotation:Carl Erik journeys with his family from Sweden to America during the famine of 1868 in this I Can Read History book.

Marianthe's Story One
Marianthe's Story One Painted Words ; Marianthe's Story Two : Spoken Memories By Aliki (Book - 1998 ) J PIC A Available by request Availability details

Annotation:Mari starts school in a new land and describes village life in her country before she and her family left in search of a better life. Two stories in one book.

An Mei's Strange and Wondrous Journey
An Mei's Strange and Wondrous Journey By Molnar-Fenton, Stephan (Book - 1998 ) J PIC M Available by request Availability details

Annotation:Six-year-old An Mei tells the story of how she was born in China and came to live in America.

A Very Important Day
A Very Important Day By Herold, Maggie Rugg (Book - 1995 ) J PIC H and more… Available to borrow in some locations

Annotation:Two hundred nineteen people from thirty-two different countries make their way to downtown New York in a snowstorm to be sworn in as United States citizens.

Watch the Stars Come Out
Watch the Stars Come Out By Levinson, Riki (Book - 1985 ) Available by request Availability details

Annotation:Grandma tells about her mama's journey to America by boat, years ago.

When Jessie Came Across the Sea
When Jessie Came Across the Sea By Hest, Amy (Book - 1997 ) J PIC H and more… Available to borrow in some locations

Annotation:A thirteen-year-old Jewish orphan reluctantly leaves her grandmother and immigrates to New York City where she works for three years sewing lace and earning money to bring her Grandmother to the United States.

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The extraordinary ethnic diversity of the United States is due to the vast numbers of immigrants who have settled here. Many Americans today grew up listening to stories from their parents or grandparents about what it was like to come to a new country and struggle to build a life for themselves and their families. In relocating from one country to another, newcomers have had to find a way to make a living, in addition to adjusting to an unfamiliar culture and often a new language. Through expressive novels, short stories, poetry, plays, biographies and memoirs that have been recently published, the books on this list describe the immigrant experience by those who have lived it.


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