A Song For Cambodia

By Booklist

Prewar Cambodia offered an almost idyllic boyhood to Arn Chorn, but the Khmer Rouge turned his world upside down, separating him from his family and sending Arn to a work camp. He survived the camp by learning to play the khim, a traditional Cambodian instrument. Sent to fight the Vietnamese, Arn fled to the jungle, fell ill, woke up in a refugee camp, nearly drowned in a flood, and was rescued and brought to the U.S. by Reverend Peter Pond who adopted him. Through music, Arn slowly adjusted to his new country but promised to return to Cambodia. An afterword describes his subsequent efforts to assist war survivors and revive traditional Cambodian arts and music. Filled with drama and tragedy, this picturebook biography skillfully telescopes Arn’s tumultuous boyhood. Realistic gouache illustrations depict the terrors of war but refrain from showing graphic violence. Amazing and inspiring, this biography is an excellent choice for multicultural studies.”