When Heaven Fell

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  • Format: Hardcover
  • Copyright: 2007-02-13
  • Publisher: Candlewick
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When a Vietnamese girl receives a visit from her half-American aunt, brimming curiosity and cultural misperceptions come to the fore. Every day nine-year-old Binh sells fruit and sodas to the girls whose families can afford to send them to school, and every night she returns to her one-room home to share a simple meal with her family. Everything changes, however, when her grandmother tells Binh she had a daughter during the war, a child who was sent away to America as a little girl. Now Di Hai Binh's aunt, a teacher is coming to visit, and Binh can't help but wonder what luxurious gifts she will bring. Yet when Di Hai arrives, there are so many confusing things about her: she's taller than the men, she's not married, and her presents are mere trinkets that could have come from Third Aunt's tourist shop! Still, Binh secretly hopes Di Hai will take her to live in America. Can her aunt live up to her expectations? Carolyn Marsden tells Binh's story with warmth and sensitivity as she ushers readers into the life and dreams of a young Vietnamese girl.

Author Biography

Carolyn Marsden is the author of several acclaimed novels for young readers. She says, "In January 2005, I traveled in Vietnam with a Buddhist delegation led by Zen Master Thich Nhat Hanh. The people I met and the stories I heard in Vietnam inspired this story of Binh." Carolyn
Marsden lives in La Jolla, California.


Binh shifted her legs. She wiped her forehead with the back of her hand, the air warm from the lingering heat of the day and the eveningcooking fire. What was everyone waiting for?

Suddenly, Ba Ngoai folded her hands in her lap, chaining them together, fingers locked. "I have important news. My daughter is coming to see me." She pulled herself up very tall.

Binh looked around the room. Daughter? Ma was right here. Whoever could Ba Ngoai be talking about?


WHEN HEAVEN FELL by Carolyn Marsden. Copyright © 2007 by Carolyn Marsden. Published by Candlewick Press, Inc., Cambridge, MA.

Excerpted from When Heaven Fell by Carolyn Marsden
All rights reserved by the original copyright owners. Excerpts are provided for display purposes only and may not be reproduced, reprinted or distributed without the written permission of the publisher.

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