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All The Broken Pieces: A Novel in Verse

All The Broken Pieces: A Novel in Verse

Written by Ann Burg

Narrated by Tobias Christian Wong


All The Broken Pieces: A Novel in Verse

Written by Ann Burg

Narrated by Tobias Christian Wong

ratings:
4.5/5 (31 ratings)
Length:
1 hour
Released:
Aug 1, 2010
ISBN:
9780545264365
Format:
Audiobook

Description

Two years after being airlifted out of war-torn Vietnam, Matt Pin is haunted: by bombs that fell like dead crows, by the family — and the terrible secret — he left behind. Now, inside a caring adoptive home in the United States, a series of profound events force him to choose between silence and candor, blame and forgiveness, fear and freedom.

By turns harrowing, dreamlike, sad, and triumphant, this searing debut novel, written in lucid verse, reveals an unforgettable perspective on the lasting impact of war and the healing power of love.

Released:
Aug 1, 2010
ISBN:
9780545264365
Format:
Audiobook

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Reviews

What people think about All The Broken Pieces

4.4
31 ratings / 24 Reviews
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Reader reviews

  • (5/5)
    Matt was airlifted out of Vietnam during the War and has been adopted by an American family. He was born to a Vietnamese mother and an American father. His new family does not know everything that happened to him in Vietnam. As Matt discovers a love of music and of baseball, he starts to come to grips with what happened to him in Vietnam. Haunting verse and a compelling story made me want to savor each word and keep turning the pages. I'd pair it with Home of the Brave by K.A. Applegate. Recommended.
  • (4/5)
    This powerful novel-in-verse is told through the eyes of 12-year-old Matt, who was airlifted out of Vietnam and adopted by an American family. He is close to his new mom and new dad, but can't forget the family he left behind, especially his younger brother. As he tries to assimilate through baseball and music, he faces hatred and prejudice from some of his classmates. While I did not find Matt's poetic voice to be entirely authentic, Burg's choice to write his story in this style adds a depth and an intensity. Students who do not know much about the Vietnam War will be captivated by Matt's resilience.
  • (4/5)
    Matt is haunted by his past in Vietnam despite his loving adoptive family in the US - free verse
  • (4/5)
    The wounds of the Vietnam War told in a verse novel. Impressive debut.
  • (4/5)
    Maine Student Book Award Nominee 2010-2011

    This book made me cry.

    Matt is 10, and he was airlifted out of Vietnam two years ago. This book, told in verse, is the story of him trying to cope with his new American life, by playing baseball, talking with his friend Jeff, and dealing with people in his town who seem to place the blame of the war on him because of his face (even though his father was an American soldier).
  • (5/5)
    I didn't know what to expect with this book since I hadn't heard anything about it. Wow. It was so well-written with beautiful language to create a feel for the emotions. This was a story about a child born to a Vietnamese mother and US Soldier father. The father is no longer in the picture. When Saigon falls, his mother sends him to the US, keeping his sibling with her. The child's perception of why this happened and how he is received in America is clearly stated. There are twists and you root for him all the way. Great book.
  • (4/5)
    I was crying by the end of this book! I found Matt's story of memory and healing so touching. The poetry was sparse and beautiful. Matt was airlifted out of Vietnam. His mom gave him to the American soldiers to get a chance at a better life. His brother was gravely injured. Matt's new family is loving, accepting, and patient. Matt plays on the baseball team and takes piano lessons from a Vietnam Vet. Through a series of experiences and time, he learns to share what he saw in Vietnam during the war.
  • (5/5)
    A beautifully written free verse book about the lasting effects of the Vietnam Conflict. This book is written probably more for preteens, but it may be a quick read for teens to give them background about some of the problems Vietnam Vets encountered when they came home.
  • (5/5)
    Matt Pin is airlifted out of Vietnam during the war. When he arrives in the United States he is adopted by a loving American family. He has a little brother sidekick and is the star pitcher of the baseball team. Everything is perfect, right? Wrong. Matt can't escape his war-torn past. His Vietnamese mother and brother haunt his dreams. The horror of the war is never far and seems to mar every aspect of Matt's life tempering his happiness and haunting his dreams. WIll Matt ever find peace? This beautifully written novel in verse evokes deep emotions through carefully selected words. What is not said is just as importance as what is described.
  • (5/5)
    A very sweet, touching story, making real the horrors of the Vietnam War but at the same time still appropriate for 9-to-12s. Airlifted out of Vietnam and evacuated to safety in America, twelve-year-old Matt has been living for two years with adoptive parents who adore him. But the war lingers, in his own mind and in the world around him. He misses the family he left behind; he blames himself for his lost little brother's land mine injuries. Once a week he goes to a meeting for Vietnam veterans, many of them disabled. He tries to reconcile his new life with the one he used to have.The free verse makes the story zip along nicely, and the baseball games give it structure. Matt's piano teacher and his coach are excellent role models. And on top of all of that, on top of enlightening the modern young reader about this forty-year-old war, I think this book is also a good example of how an adoptive family should be. Matt's parents love him unconditionally, the same as they do their biological son, but they also don't try to deny his heritage.I would highly recommend this, particularly for a school unit on Vietnam or war in general.
  • (4/5)
    This is a really great book, but I fear it won't reach the audience it is intended for. It's one of those "good" books that kids won't want to read. But some kids will pick it up and thoroughly enjoy it.
  • (4/5)
    Two years after being airlifted out of Vietnam in 1975, Matt Pin is haunted by the terrible secret he left behind and, now, in a loving adoptive home in the United States, a series of profound events forces him to confront his past.
  • (4/5)
    This book is a quick read, in part because it is short verse poetry. It reads, however, like a simple, beautifully written story. It is 1977 and 12-year-old Matt Pin is struggling how to fit into his new life. He is the son of a Vietnamese woman and an American soldier he doesn't remember. He was airlifted to safety from the war zone when the American evacuated Vietnam at the end of the war. Adopted by a caring American couple, he has worries about the fates of his mother and badly injured little brother. He also carries a secret he cannot share with anyone. Matt's adoptive family adores him and support him. His father is a military man and connects Matt with veterans who welcome him into their support group. They see in him what they struggled to give to Vietnam. He becomes the star pitcher for his middle school baseball team and must face a fellow player who lost his brother in Vietnam. Through the intervention of good coaches, loving parents, the veterans and a loving community, Matt begins to heal. If you like stories about human relationships, you will love this book.
  • (4/5)
    Great YA book in verse! Beautiful content and beautiful words
  • (4/5)
    "All the Broken Pieces" was an emotional, haunting read that brought the horrors of the Vietnam War to life. I loved Matt's character and my heart bled for him. The author perfectly portrayed the guild and gratitude he felt after being airlifted out of his war torn country, and evacuated to the safety of America leaving his mother and younger brother behind.Too often Matt blames himself for what happened, but gradually he learns to accept and forgive himself. I thought his foster parents were tow wonderful people who gave Matt security, support and unconditional love."All the Broken Pieces" explores loss, trauma and healing, using beautiful poetic language that effortlessly draws the reader in and floods them with vivid images. A wonderful find.
  • (3/5)
    Novel in verse about a boy saved/brought to US from the Vietnam war, raised by American adoptive parents. Flashbacks are woven into the story until we figure out what terrible thing happened to him about which he has tremendous guilt. The protagonist (12?) finds healthy ways to deal with issues, as do several other characters in the book. I did cry, a little, but I cry in commericals I'm so sensitive. I liked the book; that's about it.
  • (4/5)
    The Vietnam War changed so many lives ~ the soldiers, their families, their friends, their communities nit just in America but in Vietnam. This book is set in the time of the Vietnam War. Matt is part American, part Vietnamese and was brought to America and was adopted. He must learn to live with what his life was like in Vietnam and how it is changing in America.
  • (3/5)
    It kept you noted in his personal life, leaving little hints. 3/5 TF (10th grade) I selected this book because it was about baseball. AG
  • (4/5)
    In the two years that Matt has been in the United States, he hasn't been able to let go of his past and memories from Vietnam, or feel like he fits in with his adoptive family or peers at school. When he decides to try out for the baseball team to appease his father, he's very good but the teasing only gets worse. As he tries to sort out his memories and his feelings, Matt realizes he is more than he ever thought. I enjoyed the quick pace of the book, though it did take me a while to get into it (a little lack of exposition from the book. lack of reading the synopsis by me) and understand what the story was doing and where it was going. I had a hard time with some of his insecurities, but understand why it was an important part of the character.
  • (4/5)
    All The Broken Pieces gives us a beautifully written look into the after effects of war, through the eyes of a seventh-grade boy named Matt Pin.Matt was rescued from the Vietnam War and taken to America where he was adopted into a loving American family.Now two years later, Matt is still carrying around the broken pieces of his past life. Knowing that Matt might need an outlet to talk about what he has been through, he and his father start attending group sessions for war veterans who served in the same war that Matt escaped. It is then that Matt must decide whether he is going to carry those broken pieces forever, or if he will open up and share his past with others.While I enjoyed the issues addressed and the main story behind this book the one thing I was disappointed in was the character development. Besides his past, or the fact that he plays both baseball and piano we really don’t know anything about Matt. Who is he aside from these aspects of his life? What does he do when he’s not practicing baseball or piano? Who are his friends? What is he like when hanging out with friends? These are some of the questions I asked myself while reading.To sum it up, All The Broken Pieces is a beautifully written, touching story that deals with heavy topics such as the after effects of war, survivor’s guilt, and adoption. The plot was deep, I just wish the characters were too.
  • (5/5)
    All The Broken PiecesA Novel in Verse by Ann E. BurgRead by Tommy Watson and Kate Watson Vietnam, a war across the World, in another time,My Grandfather went to Vietnam, but died with stories still stuck in his throat not ready to tell,when I was very young.Vietnam affected practically everyone in the World.Soldiers, sisters, brothers, babies, mothers, fathers--- Countries grieving the dead, the injured, the heroes returned,angry and hurt and raw people, scarred by the War. Matt Pin, a Vietnamese boy, placed in soldiers’ hands,enemies trusted by his mother,after his little brother broke into pieces,(“his legs gone-they weren’t there anymore,his fingers missing too,his hands were small mangled stumps”). In our Country, still angry and raw and hurt,Love brings forth hope in a new family.Matt remembers the old one in another angry and raw and hurt country.Left to live in Vietnam. A piano and a family friendwork together, healing what Vietnam destroyed. Music is certain. It does not set land mines. It does not scar.It does not break into pieces like Matt’s little brother.Baseball is not so certain.Rob is angry, hurt and raw,his older brother dead in Vietnam.Rob embraces hate,hurling it at Matt like a dead center, heater pitch.It is almost unbearable, what Vietnam has doneto so many people.But even the most angry and hurt and raw people canovercome Vietnam. Each in his own way. Each together.Soldiers, sisters, brothers, babies, mothers, fathers---scarred by War, healed as Brothers.
  • (5/5)
    Burg, A.E. (2009). All the broken pieces. New York, NY: Scholastic Press.Grades 7 and up. Matt was airlifted out of Vietnam when he was only 10 years old. Although he lives with loving adoptive parents in the United States, the Vietnam War still haunts him. He remembers his mother telling him he must leave; his younger brother being hit by a bomb, which causes him to lose his legs; and his father who is an American soldier who promises to return, but never does.Not only does Matt’s past trouble him, but also he is the target of resentment. A few kids on his baseball team despise him, because they believe that their family members who were U.S. soldiers died for Vietnamese people like him. These kids constantly call Matt racial slurs. All the Broken Pieces is told in free verse. It is an extremely powerful story about pain, guilt, and reconciliation. The stanzas are heartfelt, gut wrenching, and deeply moving. Matt’s inner conflict will definitely move readers. They will be touched by his desire to heal from his past and to find his true identify. This story also presents the Vietnam War from different perspectives: Vietnam War veterans, family members who lost loved ones, and the Vietnamese. I highly recommend this book for a middle school library.
  • (5/5)
    Vietnam, the war America wants to forget is the common bond between Matt Pin and so many people he knows. It was the war that caused him to leave his mother and brother in the airlift, took his classmate’s brother, took so much from the veterans and their families. In sparse but graphic prose, Burg has Matt tell the story of his memories of Vietnam. He was born to an American father he never knew and a Vietnamese mother. Early in the story the reader learns that he was airlifted in the last days of the war, and adopted by an American family. His new father encourages an interest in baseball, and Matt makes the team, only to be shunned by some of the other boys. “Matt-the-rat, if you make the team I’ll quit.” Matt finds some comfort in the piano "I'm sheltered in that safe place where the only thing that matters is mucic" but always worries about his two families.With the help of his coach, his father and his piano teacher Matt and those around him learn to come to terms with some of the memories that haunt them. Each page is sparse with a lot of white space. Dialogue is denoted only by italics. This would appeal to readers who like free verse, middle school boys, those interested in the aftermath of the Vietnam War. Great curriculum connection for Social Studies.
  • (5/5)
    Matt Pin remembers broken pieces of his life in Vietnam. He was one of many children airlifted by the Americans. He like many Vietnam Vets are holding on to memories that hurt to remember but need to be released. Encouraged to try out for the baseball team he faces a new problem, prejudice by a team member because he had lost his brother in Vietnam. What will it take to start the healing process? This was a very quick book to read and one that is a definite must buy for my shelves. I grew up during the Vietnam era and remember the treatment of returning soldiers. The message found in this book was very simple, yet hit you on a deep level. I can’t wait to recommend this book to my students.