Mitali Perkins spoke at the seminar on Sunday - May 8, 2011, during the International Reading Association's annual conference, in Orlando, Florida. Her book, Bamboo People (Charlesbridge, 2010) is an exciting teen novel for 11-14 year olds.
Chiko, the son of Burmese intellects has set his goal on becoming a teacher. When he answers an advertisement seeking educators, he is conscripted into the Burmese army. He forms a friendship which alters his life immeasurably. Chiko narrates the first half of this story. Tu Reh, a Karenninarrates the second half of the book. Bamboo People was described by Publishers' Weekly as being a "tensely plotted portrait of teens caught in the crossfire." The plot intensifies when Tu RehChiko). The line between enemies is blurred as Chiko and Tu Reh struggle with their preconceived notions of prejudices of culture and class. (an ethnic minority in Burma) and his father find an injured Burmese soldier (
Mitali Perkins has a website at http://www.mitaliperkins.com where she tells of being born Mitali Bose in Kolkata (Calcutta), India, and how by the age of 11 she had lived in Ghana, Cameroon, London, New York and Mexico before settling in California during her seventh grade year. Check out this blog's previous post about paired reading - http://mcbookwords.blogspot.com/2010/07/pair-these-two-titles-burma.html