The Yellow Áo Dài
A debut picture book about a little girl who connects to her Vietnamese heritage when she accidentally rips her late grandmother's áo dài.
Naliah is excited to perform a traditional Vietnamese Fan Dance at her school’s International Day. When she finds that her special áo dài no longer fits right, she goes to her mom’s closet to find another.
She puts on a pretty yellow one—only to accidentally rip it while practicing her dance. She’s horrified to discover that this was a very special áo dài that her grandmother had worn to dance at the Mid-Autumn Festival in Vietnam.
But with a little help from her mom’s sewing kit and her grandmother’s loving legacy, Naliah learns not only how to mend the yellow áo dài but also how to believe in herself and make it her own.
Lovingly illustrated by Minnie Phan, Hanh Bui’s debut picture book, The Yellow Áo Dài, is a warm story of family, identity, and remembering those who came before.
Inspired by her first teacher at a refugee camp, Hanh Bui pursued a master’s degree in early childhood education and taught second grade before becoming a full-time mother to three children. She also served as a development officer for Senhoa Foundation in support of women and children who survived human trafficking in Cambodia, and has served on boards supporting children and parents in building community. Hanh’s commitment to celebrating her heritage includes giving presentations in school visits about her refugee experience to children studying immigration as part of their school curriculum. She serves as co-chair of Equity and Inclusion Team for Mid-Atlantic region of SCBWI, and has been featured in Highlights Children’s Magazine and Next Avenue. The Yellow Áo Dài is her debut picture book.
Minnie Phan is a queer Vietnamese American cartoonist and illustrator born in Stockton, CA, and raised across the Bay Area. Her parents were among the last wave of Vietnamese refugees to arrive in the early 90s before immigration was restricted from the region. She earned a BFA in illustration and set roots in Oakland, CA, where she's resided for 10 years. Her work ranges from editorial illustrations to comics, animation, and picture books. She values inclusive image making and diverse storytelling; she hopes for all children to see themselves as whatever they dream: artists, scientists, doctors, and more. When she's not illustrating, she teaches comics to youth in the Bay Area and advocates for safer streets for bicyclists.
"This simple, lyrical, touching story took me to a place that I did not know but to emotions that belong to us all. I will not forget it and its lesson of confession, forgiveness, and love." —Jane Yolen, award-winning author of Owl Moon and over 400 other books for children
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