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Comment: This book has already been loved by someone else. It MIGHT have some wear and tear on the edges, have some markings in it, or be an ex-library book. Over-all it is still a good book at a great price! (if it is supposed to contain a CD or access code, that may be missing)
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Heroes Paperback – March, 1997


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Product Details

  • Age Range: 5 and up
  • Grade Level: Kindergarten and up
  • Lexile Measure: 670L (What's this?)
  • Paperback: 40 pages
  • Publisher: Lee & Low Books (March 1997)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1880000504
  • ISBN-13: 978-1880000502
  • Product Dimensions: 0.2 x 10.2 x 8.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 0.3 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,168,025 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

The creators of the estimable Baseball Saved Us move from a WWII setting to the Vietnam-era '60s with this affecting tale of a Japanese American boy. When Donnie plays war with his friends, he must represent the enemy-"because I looked like them." He hates always being the bad guy and wishes he could prove that his father and uncle both fought bravely in the U.S. army. They, however, are reluctant to come to his aid: "You kids should be playing something else besides war," says his dad. Once again Mochizuki and Lee adroitly focus kids' attention on a pervasive social problem by giving it an individual face; they make their points in an age-appropriate fashion, neither trivializing the issues nor condescending to their audience. Mochizuki captures his protagonist's hurt, confusion and pride-emotions capably matched by Lee's atmospheric artwork. Produced with the same technique here as in the earlier book-images scratched out of beeswax on paper-his burnished paintings exude the patina of age and the glint of hard-won experience. Ages 4-up.
Copyright 1995 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

From Booklist

Gr. 2^-4. As they did in Baseball Saved Us (1993), Mochizuki and Lee tell a moving picture-book story about a Japanese American child who is treated as the enemy in his own country. The time here is the 1960s; the Vietnam War is on. In the schoolyard war games, Donnie is always made to play the bad guy "because I looked like them." He begs his father and uncle to show the school that they fought in the U.S. Army during World War II. The strong, brown-shaded pictures show the pain of the outsider and his loneliness in the crowd. There's no glorification of war: even in the triumphant scene when the Japanese American soldiers reluctantly come out in their uniforms and medals, they have dignity but no bravado. Hazel Rochman --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

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Customer Reviews

3.6 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on June 27, 1999
Format: Hardcover
For too long mainstream American clung to the idea that blue eyes and blond hair equalled an "all-American kid." In times of war, the resulting prejudice against our own citizens of Japanese descent led to some of the most shameful actions in our Nation's history. Here, a young boy's message that he is American is bolstered by the appearance of men in his family in their American military service uniforms. Heavier in its message than BASEBALL SAVED US (an outstanding title by the same author), the theme of HEROES nevertheless should be shared again and again.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on March 11, 2001
Format: Paperback
This is a beautiful book. I was particularly moved by the quiet, gentle way the father and uncle helped the little boy, by showing his friends that their views were completely wrong, without berating or lecturing them, and then providing them with a new game to play. I am a bit baffled as to why one reviewer would demand to know why there are no heroines in the book. That's not what the story is about, is why. It's a gem of a book and to carp at it for not following someone else's agenda is staggeringly unfair.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Chris on September 3, 2007
Format: Paperback
A previous review asks why the boy in this story had to have help from his father and uncle to solve his problem with his classmates... children often need the help of the adults in their lives to solve problems. That is the nature of a child-parent relationship. I appreciated the way the uncle and father helped Donnie deal with the racist attitude of his classmates. I read this book to my children because I felt it was an excellent opportunity for them to develop empathy for someone "different" than themselves. As the parent of adopted children who have a Native American and Mexican heritage, I look for ways to develop in my kids a sense of diversity. I checked this book out from the library, but I am buying it because I would like to read it over and over to my kids! Perhaps I will have the opportunity to share it with their classrooms as well!
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By Anthony Poston on October 6, 2014
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book is fair, but is more about being bullied than heroes.
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0 of 18 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on May 27, 1999
Format: Turtleback
I wanted to like this book. The theme is one I think important. However, it was very troubling. First, the little boy is unable to speak up for himself. It's a poor message to Asian children. Second, the boy's father and uncle have to "speak" for him by appearing in uniform. All due respect to the veterans of the armed services, but why couldn't the boy resolve this problem himself instead of having grown ups do it for him? And what about heroines? This book fails to measure up to its promise. Save your money.
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