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Children of the River Children of the River
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Children of the River Children of the River

3.66  ·  Rating details ·  1,528 Ratings  ·  181 Reviews
""The approach I take with my writing is to have my work reflect real life, and yet be shaped into the best story possible. I feel that a powerful piece of fiction can often convey an emotional truth more compellingly than a strictly factual version.""--Linda Crew
Linda Crew is a recipient of the IRA Children's Book Award and the Golden Kite Award, and her books have been
ebook, 224 pages
Published January 21st 2009 by Laurel Leaf Library (first published 1989)
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Shadow~Infj Rising action: When Sundara has to, leave her home country to go to America, and meeting Jonathan.
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Nov 05, 2011 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I have no idea why my teacher made me read this. It's like twilight and a Cambodian history book mixed. Like WTF?! Apparently Jonathan is perfect and apparently the girl is as well. ALL the boys loveeee her even though she is poor and can't speak proper English. And what is with the aunt? Like even though I don't like the girl but why are you blaming her for your laziness and weakness? You're the mother you should have been taking care of the dam thing! O yah and of course there has to be a mean ...more
Apr 05, 2013 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I didn't like this book. We read it in our language arts class and I despised having to read it every day. The plot is drawn out and boring and her aunt is really weird. I would not recommend this book.
Patrick Peterson
Jun 17, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Zelda Zara
Recommended to Patrick by: St. Andrews School 8th grade English
This book was on my son's summer reading list for going in to 8th grade. My wife read it and loved it. Arthur is almost finished with it and is enjoying it. I was totally captivated and so psyched that my son's English teacher required it. What a happy surprise.

1. Horror of communism - hinted and explicit - throughout the book. Perhaps understated in the details, but that still came across very powerfully

2. Difficulty of emigration & immigration

3. Cushy, shallow concerns of most non-i
Mar 11, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I read this book back in middle school, when it appeared on our summer reading list. I enjoyed the story then, but like other readers, I rolled my eyes a bit at the aunt's behavior. "Why couldn't she be more understanding?" I asked myself.

The story has stayed with me for over a decade after that initial reading, and it's aged beautifully. I see now how deeply and richly Linda Crew incorporated questions of love, loss, guilt, assimilation, and responsibility. I'm so glad I encountered this book i
Allison Chan

First of all, there's FORBIDDEN ROMANCE, one of the most cliche, overused topics nowadays. And even worse, it's written so terribly that I can't stand it! And it has to work in the end! Why can't authors write tragic ends or something?!

Secondly, it's the whole I-came-from-another-country-and-meet-some-popular-guy-who-likes-me. Oh. My. Freaking. God. There's like the smallest of chances that that'll happen. Seriously. If I was the new kid, every single popular guy would
Children of the river by linda crew is a book That takes place in the 70s about a Cmbodian refuge girl fleeing from the kamer roge to america. Her name is Sundara and she left both her parents behind and leving with her aunt uncle and cousins to get on a crowdwed cargo boat, filled with hundereds of other refugies. With hardly anny food or water on the crowded boat sundaras aunt Soka asks her to take care of her baby on the boat. Unable to find anny food for the baby sundara is forced to throgh ...more
Kristine Kouba
Feb 07, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Plot summary: The main character's family has fled from Cambodia to the United States. They wanted to escape the war, killings, and horror taking place in their country. This story shows how the Sundara, the main character adjusts to life in America

Main Characters: Sundara - long black hair, shy, teenager, learned French first, now is trying to learn English. In high school, wants to fit in, wants to adjust well to American traditions/ways, but wants and is pressured to stay true to her family's
Sep 09, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Children of the river by Linda Crew is another book with an immigration theme. The main character Sundara leaves Cambodia with her aunts family to escape the communist Khmer Rouge army and heads to the U.S. She is only thirteen and she leaves behind family including her parents, her brother, sister, and a boy she has cared about since she was young. She constantly struggles to fit in at her high school in Oregon, but at the same time, she struggles to keep some of her Cambodian traditions that ...more
"Children of the River" tells the story of Sundara. A young Cambodian girl, she is staying with her aunt and uncle when the Khmer Rouge sweep to power and she has to flee to America. Sundara has to find a way to live in a new culture, and deal with meeting an American boy she likes but that her family disapproves of, without having any news about her loved ones back in Cambodia.

Story-wise this book is very interesting, and you do learn a lot about immigrant life in the USA in the 1970s. I also
Mar 05, 2012 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: book-reports
How would you like to be whisked away one night without your parents or knowing where your going? Then come to find out your going to a totally different country and all your friends and family are being killed by the second. This is what happened to Sandara, a Khmer girl from Cambodia, in the book "Children of the River" by Linda Crew. She is now a Junior in High school 4 years later and nothing has changed, things are still just as hard.

If trying to find new friends and fitting into a new cu
Laken Scott
Jan 11, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: shelf-2b
This is one of those books you're pleasantly surprised by.

I had to read this book for school so I immediately assumed it would suck. Naturally. But as I got into it I really started to enjoy it. The whole refugee idea is something I don't hear much about and this book was very enlightening for me.

It also talked about customs of Cambodia and their traditional family structure which is so different from what we're used to.

This book was also a cheesy romance which (if I'm honest) are my guilty p
Dec 31, 2008 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I swear I only read this because I found it on my bookshelf after the move and had nothing else. The Cambodian inmigrant falling in love with the high school football star was entertaining, but seriously... That's what I get for reading young adult's novels.
Apr 24, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A lovely, sweet, short read.

"If you love someone, you better let them know while you can."
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Ellie Van
Nov 14, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
One of the best romance books ever. Must read.
Dec 15, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I was assigned this book to read and I liked it a lot. Super funny and so cute! Wish I had this experience with a boy like Jonathan in high school!
Macey Groves
Jan 10, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
i liked it although the way the aunt treats her drives me crazy
Mar 29, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
This book isn’t perfect, that’s for sure. There are some sluggish sections, but I think that Crew wanted the reader to recognize those parts and from that perspective, those parts do contributes to the story. I’ve never been a big fan of that kind writing but whatever, it’s not an illogical conclusion to draw. But other than those bits I quite liked this book. I suppose it’s classified as a ‘young-adults’ book, but when I read this a long time ago I had no idea who the communists or the Khmer Ro ...more
Liza Centeio
Oct 02, 2008 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: my aunt
Liza's Book Review

I just finished reading this book which is called Children Of The River whos author is Linda Crew. This book is fiction. You may not automaticaly pick this up when your reading it but this book has several themes. The themes that I picked up were families, the individual vs. society, race(culture), and romance. Your probably wondering how could a book have so much themes but It's possible just like this one.
I randomly choose this book off my teachers shelf so I can have an i
Imagine having to leave your family to a new country that is on the opposite side of the world. This is was happened to a young girl, Sundara Sovann, in Children of the River. The author Linda Crew writes about Sundara's life in America, after escaping the war torn county of Cambodia at the age of 13 because of the Khmer Rouge attack on her homeland. Sundara had to leave her parents, friends, siblings and Chamreoun - the boy she loved.
(view spoiler)
Josh Stoll
Review: I enjoyed reading this book. It's not exactly the best-written book I've ever read, but the themes-- immigration, fitting in, interracial romance-- can be heady and its consideration of them are complex, particularly for a young adult novel. The writing can trip up the themes, though, as it's a bit too simplistic in plot, and even a bit dangerous in its consideration of love-- I picture the end scene of The Graduate whenever Sundara and Jonathan talked about love.
Plot: The story is about
Mar 11, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Children of the River
Children of the River is by Linda Crew and was published in 1989. This story takes place in Cambodia in 1975. If this story took place long long ago it would be a little different because there wouldn't be airplanes that can hold a lot of passengers safely, so they couldn't take the people in Cambodia to America. Also if it took place about right now, then there could be more planes to take people out of Cambodia to America.
The things I liked about this book is how Sundar
Oct 29, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This historical fiction is set in the 1970s when many Cambodians were fleeing from the brutal regime of the Khmer rouge. Sundara is a Cambodian refugee who is living with her aunt and uncle's family, and it is a story about her living in two cultures and trying to adapt to living in America. I read this with my son who read it for his English class. The characters are a bit one-dimensional like the tyrannical aunt, but it is an insightful story about refugees and their lives.

Donna Davis
This story is set during the reign of the Khmer Rouge (think Brown Shirts, but in Cambodia) and Sundara's family is one of a number of families in her village that are being targeted. Panicked, they gather together everyone they can find RIGHT NOW, and board a boat that is going somewhere else. They know virtually nothing about what is about to happen.

Crucial events happen on this voyage that will color their experience as a family in the new world. I won't give too much away; even adults can en
Feb 08, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Allie Brown
This book follow a young girl who is forced to evacuate Cambodia with her aunt and uncle and cousins, leaving behind her own immediate family and crush. As she adjusts to life in America so does her extended family. Sundara is caught between life as a teenage refugee from her home land and life as an American teenager. She is forced to juggle between the traditions of her family and the new "bold" ways of American culture. Sundara finds love in the high school football star, Jonathon McKinnon... ...more

Children of the River was a remarkable read that I will remember for years to come. Sundara, her aunt, her uncle and cousin flee Cambodia and the communist regime for safety. Oregon becomes their new terretory where they will adapt to the American ways. However, when Sundara's heart falls for the all-American football player Jonathan, she must choose between her customs and love. Her aunt places a hard hand on her shoulder which impacts her decisions greatly. She uses guilt and loy
Jul 16, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
For many children of Immigrant families, attending school with children of local families can be a real struggle. In “Children of the River,” Sundara experiences this confliction. Her family escaped the genocide in Cambodia and now lives in the United States. They expect Sundara to let them choose a husband for her as they would in Cambodia. But in America, youth choose who they want to marry, and Sundara has fallen in love with an American boy.

Reading this book gave me a glimpse of what it’s li
Emilie W
Sundara is a young Cambodian refugee that's adopted into her extended family after fleeing from their wartorn homeland. What she must leave behind is her family, her country, and her sweetheart. In America, she suffers from the pull between her Cambodian and American cultures. Readers will identify with her responsibilities as a young person growing up including her feelings of guilt, isolation, and anxiety. In this book, I could really appreciate the historical context and the reality of Sundar ...more
"Children of the River" by Linda Crew is themed around refugees. Sundara has escaped from Cambodia, barely with her own life, and now she doesn't know where her family is. As a result, she moved to Oregon with her aunt. As you live with Sundara in the third person format, you see what a difficulty being a refugee can be. As Sundara struggles with her former culture, and her American opportunity, she meets Jonathan, which makes things even worse. They are both so attracted to each other, but he i ...more
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Boring 2 9 Apr 22, 2013 01:13AM  
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My early books were for young readers, and perhaps my best-known is my first, Children of the River. Set against the backdrop of the Cambodian refugee crisis of 1979, it’s still used in schools and English-as-a-second-language classes across the country twenty-seven years since publication. My two most recent—Brides of Eden: a True Story Imagined and A Heart for Any Fate: Westward to Oregon 1845—w ...more
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“Oh, why did people have to be seperated before they understood how much they meant to each other?” 21 likes
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