Take part in the National Endowment for the Arts Big Read by enjoying this year's selection, The Best We Could Do, by Thi Bui.
For a digital copy of the reading guide or a Vietnamese excerpted translated copy of The Best We Can Do, please email email@example.com.
"And that if I could see Viet Nam as a real place, and not a symbol of something lost...I would see my parents as real people...and learn to love them better."—from The Best We Could Do
The Best We Could Do: An Illustrated Memoir
by Thi Bui
Thi’s debut graphic memoir, The Best We Could Do, is the story of her family in the years before, during, and after the Vietnam War. It was selected for an American Book Award, a Common Book for UCLA and other colleges and universities, a National Book Critics Circle finalist, and was an Eisner Award finalist. Her memoir was included in Bill Gates’ Top 5 Books of 2017 and was called, “A book to break your heart and heal it,” by Pulitzer Prize-winner Viet Thanh Nguyen.
A veteran illustrator, Thi’s short comics can be found online at The Nib, PEN America, and BOOM California. She is a contributor to Refugees Anthology, published by Abrams Press, and illustrated A Different Pond, a 2018 Caldecott Honor Book, with writer Bao Phi. With her son, Hien, she co-illustrated the children’s book, Chicken of the Sea written by Viet Thanh Nguyen and his son, Ellison.
This heartwarming book and its themes will deeply resonate with Angelenos and mirror the experiences of the diverse immigrant population of the Los Angeles area.