Astrid and Apollo and the Starry Campout

(Author) (Illustrator)
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Product Details
$8.99  $8.36
Picture Window Books
Publish Date
5.0 X 7.4 X 0.2 inches | 0.2 pounds

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About the Author
V.T. Bidania was born in Laos and grew up in St. Paul, Minnesota. She spent most of her childhood writing stories and now that she's an adult, she is thrilled to be writing stories for children. She has an M.F.A. in Creative Writing from The New School and is a recipient of the Loft Literary Center's Mirrors & Windows Fellowship. She lives outside of the Twin Cities with her family.
Dara Lashia Lee is a Hmong American illustrator based in the Twin Cities in Minnesota. She utilizes digital media to create semi-real illustrations ranging from Japanese anime and western cartoon styles. Her Hmong-inspired illustrations were displayed at the Qhia Dab Neeg (Storytelling) touring exhibit from 2015 to 2018. When she's not drawing, she likes to travel, take silly photos of her cat, and drink bubble tea.
I absolutely loved reading this fun, humorous chapter book series--the very first that features a Hmong American family. The twins, Astrid and Apollo, tackle adventures that are relevant to all kids everywhere, and they know they always have the love of their family to fall back on. I am excited for young readers to meet Astrid and Apollo--the new dream team for everyone's bookshelves!-- "Christina Soontornvat, Author: A Wish in the Dark and Diary of an Ice Princess"
Loved this sweet adventure that finds Hmong Minnesota twins Astrid and Apollo camping for the first time. Mosquito-adverse and smelly-bathroom-hater Astrid was my younger self. I can't wait to follow the twins on their next escapade!-- "Stacey Lee, award-winning author of The Downstairs Girl"
A sweet and funny early chapter for young readers about twin siblings who go on a family campout for the first time. Introduction of Hmong words and foods made this story even more special.-- "Debbi Michiko Florence"
Astrid and Apollo and the Starry Campout is a great book for early readers - it's relatable and fun! The story is about Astrid facing her camping fears with her twin brother, Apollo, and their family. With Hmong details woven into the story, kids will be exposed to small details of Hmong culture, from the characters' names to the food they like to eat. I read this with my 4-year-old and 6-year-old boys, and they both thoroughly enjoyed it.-- "Vicky Fang, author of the Happy Paws series"
Twin Hmong American siblings lean on each other during a camping trip in this series opener. Mosquito bites, scary bears, and an outhouse are just some of the fears keeping Astrid hidden away in a closet while her family prepares for their upcoming campout. Her supportive twin brother, Apollo, reassures her that whatever happens, they will get through it together. This early chapter book highlights the strength of sibling bonds and shows Astrid overcoming adversity in an approachable way. Her timidity and anxiety gradually decrease as she discovers the reality of camping is a lot less scary than her imagination. While the short chapters and simple sentence structure support a newly independent reader, some page layouts are disjointed, with illustrations that do not match the corresponding text. Despite this minor flaw, the cute, cartoon images showcase a gentle-feeling outdoors and the warm family connection that defines this trip. Hmong cultural elements such as names and cuisine are organically incorporated into the storyline. It's an accessible and authentic introduction to an ethnic group rarely featured in children's literature or mainstream popular culture. Facts about the Hmong, popular Hmong foods, a glossary, and a discussion guide are included in the backmatter. This lighthearted adventure features much-needed Hmong representation and an equally satisfying plot. (Fiction. 6-9)-- "Kirkus Reviews"