What's the Name of That Book??? discussion

The Voyage of the Lucky Dragon
This topic is about The Voyage of the Lucky Dragon
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SOLVED: Children's/YA > SOLVED. 80s Children's book - Vietnamese boy/girl on refugee boat [s]

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Jane | 9 comments I thought this book would be easy to find. I thought it was an award winner. I can almost remember the title and cover. I remember the plot as being remarkably like the plot summary for Adrift at Sea: A Vietnamese Boy's Story of Survival by Marsha Forchuk Skrypuch, except that that book was published in 2016 whereas the book I'm looking for must have been published in the 80s. Also, I don't think the book I'm looking for has any pictures.

If I remember correctly, the majority of the plot takes place on the boat. I know the situation on the boat is dire, and that the dire situation seems unending. I remember very specifically that the food had run out and that our young protagonist (boy or girl) was searching for grains of rice between the wood planks of the boat deck, but that it was hopeless because the children on the boat had already searched for rice this way several times.

I think the book cover was simply a painting of a boat on the open water.

I hope someone can remember this book. Thanks for your help.


message 3: by Jane (last edited May 06, 2018 08:54PM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Jane | 9 comments You know? That could be it. I'll look for it and read it.

I've been told that the book I'm looking for may have been written by a local (California) author and put out by an indie publisher, so I thought I might have luck checking with some libraries.


message 4: by Kate (new)

Kate Farrell | 4069 comments Mod
Jane, please let us know if A Boat to Nowhere is your book or if you are still looking. We like to know for sure (or as sure as the OP is) before we mark a book as Solved. Thanks.


Jane | 9 comments I finished A Boat to Nowhere yesterday. It was good, but not the book I was looking for. My search continues.


message 8: by Tadgh (new)

Tadgh | 28 comments How certain are you the main character is Vietnamese? The cover, it's like Life of Pi's older covers, minus the tiger?

My only other guess, I can't remember the title either, unfortunately. I only remember: it was written decades before I read it for high school (2008-2009 year), the main girl is a Cambodian refugee in America, and she continually "has to prove" she doesn't support the Khmer Rouge by talking about her time spent on the boat over.


Jane | 9 comments I think I've found the book I was looking for. It's called The Voyage of the Lucky Dragon published in 1982. The Voyage Of The Lucky Dragon by Jack Bennett

I wasn't sure, but I kept thinking that "dragon" might be in the title. I didn't recognize any specific scenes within the book, but I had a vague and consistent sense of familiarity while reading. And, most telling, there was a scene in which the protagonist's aunt collects rice grains from between the boards of the boat's deck, and later the protagonist searches for any missed grains but none were to be found. That is almost an exact match of what I remember.


message 10: by Rainbowheart (new)

Rainbowheart | 21140 comments Glad you found it. Thanks for letting us know!


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