Escape from Saigon
How a Vietnam War Orphan Became an American Boy
By Andrea Warren
(Farrar, Straus and Giroux (BYR), Hardcover, 9780374322243, 128pp.)
Publication Date: August 26, 2004
Other Editions of This Title: Paperback
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An unforgettable true story of an orphan caught in the midst of war
Over a million South Vietnamese children were orphaned by the Vietnam War. This affecting true account tells the story of Long, who, like more than 40,000 other orphans, is Amerasian -- a mixed-race child -- with little future in Vietnam. Escape from Saigon allows readers to experience Long's struggle to survive in war-torn Vietnam, his dramatic escape to America as part of "Operation Babylift" during the last chaotic days before the fall of Saigon, and his life in the United States as "Matt," part of a loving Ohio family. Finally, as a young doctor, he journeys back to Vietnam, ready to reconcile his Vietnamese past with his American present.
As the thirtieth anniversary of the end of the Vietnam War approaches, this compelling account provides a fascinating introduction to the war and the plight of children caught in the middle of it.
Andrea Warren 's own daughter is one of the 2,300 orphans rescued by Operation Babylift. She is the author of Surviving Hitler, a Robert F. Sibert Honor Book, and Orphan Train Rider, which received the Boston Globe-Horn Book Award for Nonfiction. She lives in Prairie Village, Kansas.
"Always true to a child's viewpoint, Warren's clear narrative, with many documentary photos, begins as a boy struggles to survive in Vietnam...The child-at-war story and the facts about the Operation Babylift rescue are tense and exciting...fascinating." -- Starred, Booklist
"Lavishly illustrated with archival photographs, the narrative is interspersed with just the right amount of war history, never losing the focus on Long and his experiences and ratcheting up the emotional intensity as he lifts off from Vietnam and lands in Chicago." --Kirkus Reviews
"Warren deftly weaves into Long's story information about the Vietnam conflict, life in Saigon, the plight of children during war, and the political machinations involved in airlifting thousands of youngsters to safety during the American evacuation." -- The Horn Book
"This is a personal story, one so well written that it will be sure to hold readers' attention. An outstanding choice." -- School Library Journal
"Compelling." -- Publishers Weekly
"Well written and filled with many poignant and heart-wrenching photos from the era, this biography will evoke both discussion and contemplation among young teens." -- VOYA