I have a four-year-old son who’s bi-racial (Lao-Ethiopian). I read him this book about Mali’s journey; and in a surprising & sweet, innocent way, my son started asking me about war, about why Mali had to leave her country. It was a special bonding moment for my son & me, for me to have the opportunity to educate/teach him about his daddy’s own journey to America. I was born in Vientiane, and spent 14 months in Nong Khai Refugee camp before coming to America.
Mali Under the Night Sky is the true story of Laotian-American artist Malichansouk Kouanchao, whose family was forced by civil war to flee Laos when she was five. Before the war began, Mali lived in a beautiful community where she felt safe and was much loved. But the coming war caused her family to flee to another country and a life that was less than ideal. What did she carry with her? She carried her memories. And they in turn carried her across the world, sharing where she is from and all that she loves with the people she meets.