TigerFish author visits Winters High School this summer

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By Cara Baker, Winner of the Winters High School Newspaper Contest

A third period World Literature class at Winters High School has read a variety of books throughout the year. They have read books about stories of people all of the world. After studying about refugees, the student’s teacher, Mrs. Detrick gave an assignment to read a book called “TigerFish.” This book written by Hoang Chi Truong, was a memoir of her life and her experience being a refugee of the Vietnam war. Many students found the book engaging and were interested in learning how a refugee such as Truong learned to adapt from her childhood in Vietnam to her high school years in the United States. On April 26 Mrs. Detrick’s third period World Literature class was visited at the Winters Library by the acclaimed author Hoang Chi Truong.

In the beginning of her presentation, after introducing herself and her book, Truong explained why she decided to call the book Tigerfish. She related to the students how in Vietnamese tradition, she was born in the year of the tiger. Once she fled to the United States, she learned that in American customs, she was born as an Aquarius, thus the name TigerFish was born. In more depth, Truong dictated how she had an “identity crisis.” Once her family relocated, Truong had to learn to adapt, and figure out who she was as a person. She encouraged the students to accept their double heritage is they had such, and to understand who they were. She told the class to be kind to each other because no one knows just what others are going through. After inspiring words, Truong accepted and answered the student’s questions.

There was much learned at Truong’s presentation. It is always interesting to read about the life of someone and actually meet them in person. In the Margaret Parson’s room in the Winters Library, the students all thanked the acclaimed author. They gathered around Truong and her book and took a picture. The significance of meeting an author such as Truong and having her emphasize the importance of treating all equally kind will hopefully stay with the students and perhaps change their perspective of their everyday lives.

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