- Atheneum Books for Young Readers |
- 224 pages |
- ISBN 9781416998594 |
- January 2010 |
- Grades 5 - 9 |
- Lexile ® 700
Hear an Excerpt
Reading Group Guide
Discuss Y’Tin’s attitude toward school. Why is his mother so determined that he complete his education? Cite evidence that Y’Tin is willing to learn in spite of his rebellion against school. When the North Vietnamese become a threat to the Rhade tribe, Y’Tin’s family is forced to leave the village. Explain why Y’Tin suddenly wants to go to school when he no longer has to.
Y’Tin spends a lot of time daydreaming and thinking. He explains the difference to his mother: “Daydreaming is thinking about things that aren’t true yet. Thinking is when you ponder matters that are already true.” What “truth” does Y’Tin ponder the most? Which “truth” hurts the most? Debate whether Y’Tin’s daydreams come true. Discuss Lady’s role in helping Y’Tin realize his dream.
Y’Tin says that next to his father, Tomas is the man that he most admires. What is it about Tomas that Y’Tin admires? What causes Tomas to turn on Y’Tin? How does this change Y’Tin’s admiration for Tomas? When do Tomas and Y’Juen become “we,” casting Y’Tin aside? Y’Tin’s father has always told him that the jungle changes a man. Debate whether it’s the jungle that changes Tomas and Y’Juen or something else.
Y’Tin thinks a lot a see more
Behind the Book
Behind the Book - A Million Shades of Gray
Behind the Book with Cynthia Kadohata
Many times when people tell me that I should write about this or that, the subject doesn’t click with me for one reason or another. But in 2005, I got an e-mail out of the blue from a woman who had adopted a Montagnard boy many years ago. Someone had suggested she take a look at my website, because I write a bit on the site about adopting my son from Kazakhstan.
She said I ought to write a book about the Montagnards. I