cover image This Is Not My Home

This Is Not My Home

Vivienne Chang and Eugenia Yoh. Little, Brown, $18.99 (48p) ISBN 978-0-316-37710-2

When her mother tells her that they’re moving to Taiwan, Lily immediately poses a barrage of concerns: “What about our backyard barbecues? Or our car? And the fireflies at Parsley Park? What about Jill?” Accompanying paneled illustrations show the pale-skinned, dot-eyed child gesturing wildly at each thing mentioned, and clutching friend Jill in a tight embrace. Though Mama explains that they need to care for Lily’s Ah Ma, the child remains dejected, and a warm welcome from Ah Ma doesn’t change her mood. Unfamiliarity abounds—“This is not my backyard barbecue. This is not our car, these are not my fireflies, and this is not Jill” accompanies humorous images of Lily rejecting Taiwanese cuisine and contending with a speeding scooter and a pit latrine. Growing loneliness at school is the final straw, but a heart-to-heart with Mama gives Lily perspective: “I know this is not your home. But this is mine.... These are my people.” Digitally sketched and colored spreads play with the panel format to spotlight the passing of time and bonds forged as Lily slowly transitions to a new home. Debut author-illustrator duo Chang and Yoh offer a take by turns moving and funny, capturing the heartfelt struggles that come with a significant change. Ages 4–8. Agent (for Chang and Yoh): Ellen Goff, HG Literary. (Jan.)