War is usually a complicated event, not easily understood by the people who experience it, much less those who only read about it. Yet, in this book, Lewis Parker manages to thoroughly explain (in a mere 399 words) something as complicated as the Vietnam War. He starts by telling the reason for the war, then gives details about the war itself, and finally explains why many Vietnamese came to the United States after the war, what their lives were like once they got there, and what life is like for Vietnamese Americans today. Captions and fact boxes make the details easy for readers to follow. Black-and-white and color photographs and maps enhance the text, giving readers a glimpse into the world of those involved in the Vietnam War and the lives of Vietnamese immigrants today. This book is part of the "Reading Power" series of Hi-Low books from PowerKids Press, designed to make complicated subjects understandable for young readers and older readers with limited reading ability. This would make an excellent reference for any elementary school library. 2003, Powerkids Press/The Rosen Publishing Group,
Gr 2-5-Brief looks at the immigration history of three different ethnic groups. The simple, straightforward texts are accompanied by generally clear, black-and-white or color photographs, basic maps, and short fact boxes. However, the abbreviated material can be misleading. For example, Japanese Immigrants correctly has the first large group coming to Hawaii in 1885; the following sentence states that many came to work on sugarcane or pineapple plantations. Pineapple wasn't introduced to Hawaii until 1885, and it wasn't until many years later that immigrants found work on these plantations. Mexican Immigrants states that in World War II the U.S. "needed people to work on farms and to build railroads." Mexicans came at that time primarily to work in agriculture; the implication that they built railroads then is not worth mentioning. Despite such limitations, these titles provide good introductory-level coverage.-Diane S. Marton, Arlington County Library, VA Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.